JD.com, one of China’s leading technology-driven eCommerce companies, and Google announced Monday that Google will invest $550 million in cash in JD.com as part of a strategic partnership.
Google and JD plan to collaborate on a range of strategic initiatives, including joint development of retail solutions in a range of regions around the world, including Southeast Asia, the U.S., and Europe.
By applying JD’s supply chain and logistics expertise and Google’s technology strengths, the two companies aim to explore the creation of next-generation retail infrastructure solutions, with the goal of offering helpful, personalized and frictionless shopping experiences.
JD also plans to make a selection of high-quality products available for sale through Google Shopping in multiple regions.
“This partnership with Google opens up a broad range of possibilities to offer a superior retail experience to consumers throughout the world. This marks an important step in the process of modernizing global retail. As we celebrate our June 18 anniversary sale, this partnership opens a new chapter in our history.”
Jianwen Liao, Chief Strategy Officer – JD.com
Google Taking Aim at Amazon?
JD.com has been aggressively expanding in Europe and also has an existing partnership with Walmart. It has been suggested earlier in the year that JD.com will expand in the U.S. by the end of the year and that would likely involve Walmart.
Walmart has also partnered with Google with its Google Home devices to provide a real alternative to Amazon’s Echo devices which are integrated into the online retailers shopping platform.
READ MORE: Walmart Offers Voice Shopping on Google Home
Is this just the beginning of a new triad in eCommerce? Between Walmart, Google, and JD.com, those companies would certainly create a formidable challenge to Amazon.
“We are excited to partner with JD.com and explore new solutions for retail ecosystems around the world to enable helpful, personalized and frictionless shopping experiences that give consumers the power to shop wherever and however they want.”
Google Chief Business Officer Philipp Schindler.
And unlike Jack Ma’s Alibaba Group, which has struggled to expand in the U.S., JD.com may find it easier to build “strategic partnerships” with western companies such as Google and Walmart to expand its reach in North America and Europe.
It is worth keeping an eye on JD.com and follow where this may lead. $550 million seems like a lot of money, but Google’s parent company Alphabet has over $100 billion in cash on hand. In other words, Google didn’t break much of the piggy bank!
Also, considering that Walmart just forked out over $16 billion to acquire Flipkart in India, this is really a very small investment.
But one that could tie JD.com with Google (and potentially include Walmart) and bring some interesting new possibilities to Google Shopping.
This is a bit of a “big picture story”, but if you have any thoughts on this topic, please head over to our Facebook Discussion Group or use the comments section below.
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