Here’s what you should know before the weekend starts.

1. Alibaba raises stake in India’s crowded ecommerce market

Alibaba is leading a $200 million funding round in India’s Paytm to give it a controlling stake of 60% percent in the mobile shopping and payments app.

The funding is for Paytm’s ecommerce business, which the startup decided to split from its payments unit last year. It puts Alibaba closer to a formal entry into India’s burgeoning ecommerce market to combat market leaders Flipkart and Amazon. A clear indicator that Alibaba is intending to compete for market share.

Trouble for India’s incumbents? Alibaba’s investment in Paytm can pose trouble for local players Flipkart and Snapdeal. Both have been struggling to raise funds, with Flipkart’s valuation cut several times, and Snapdeal recently announced a 100% pay cut for its founders.

Read the rest of the story here.

2. Goldman Sachs: online shopping in China to double by 2020

Already the world’s largest, China’s online retailing market will grow to $1.7 trillion by 2020 compared with $750 billion last year. Perhaps more important to continuing growth is Goldman’s expectation that 200 million new Chinese shoppers will come online by 2020.

The biggest opportunity is the expansion of online sales of FMCG items such as groceries, personal care and healthcare, packaged foods and other everyday items typically found in supermarkets.

Tmall is also expected to control 70% of China’s online B2C market by 2020

Read the rest of the story here.


3. Insights: Target to overhaul stores and digital operations

Another reaction to the Amazon effect?

Target unveiled a series of initiatives designed to reverse the big box retailer’s same-store sales declines, including an investment of more than $2 billion of capital in 2017 and more than $7 billion over the next three years. The company will use about $1 billion of operating profits this year to improve brick-and-mortar and digital operations.

Insights from Retail Dive

“Target just took longer to feel the ‘Amazon digital effect’ than Best Buy, due to the categories and customer base they play within. Amazon initially went after books (successfully destroying physical book retailers), and then went onto CE and office supplies, and now are expanding into food and apparel,” said Matt Sargent, Senior Vice President of Retail at Frank N. Magid Associates, Inc.

The retailer should return to their legacy ability to differentiate with exclusive, affordable ‘fresh’ product offerings coupled with clean & easy shopper experiences.

Read the rest of the story here.


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