Alibaba Goes Down Under, Launches Operations in Melbourne

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Alibaba is planning to boost its Asia-Pacific retail activities by launching operations in Melbourne, in order to serve online consumers in Australia and New Zealand, reports South China Morning Post.. The company also recently announced its plans of launching an office in Victoria later this year as the Chinese ecommerce giant makes another crucial step in its plan for world expansion.

“A stronger presence in Australia and New Zealand will advance our global goal of serving two billion customers, while supporting tens of millions of small businesses and brands all over the world,” says Michael Evans, President of Alibaba.

Cross border retail ecommerce sales in China are forecast to reach $85.76 billion this year, as there is a growing domestic demand for quality merchandise from foreign markets.

The rapid surge in cross-border ecommerce by Chinese shoppers have increased activity on Alibaba owned Tmall Global and also JD.com, owned by Tencent Holdings.

The best performing products from Australia and New Zealand sold on Tmall local and Tmall global are food and beverage, cosmetics and mother & infant goods.

Alibaba has estimated that there are a total of 1,300 Australian brands on Tmall and Tmall Global. The company is confident that the newly expanded team in Melbourne will be able to support Australian and New Zealand merchants already present on the platforms, as well as help push new merchants who are looking to expand to China, onto the platforms.

This expansion follows Alibaba’s partnership with business development agency New Zealand Trade and Enterprise to support the expansion of New Zealand brands in China, formed in April.

Alibaba has the capacity to give infrastructural support to local Australian and New Zealand merchants by providing payment, cloud and logistics options.

A version of this appeared in South China Morning Post on July 19. Read the full version here.