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在线翻译:
szdaily -> Markets
Alibaba to buy stake in home improvement chain
    2018-February-13  08:53    Shenzhen Daily

ALIBABA Group Holding will pay about 5.45 billion yuan (US$866 million) for a 15 percent stake in Beijing Easyhome Furnishing Chain Store Group Co., a home improvement chain, as the Internet giant expands its investments in offline and retail businesses.

The investment underscores the company’s retail strategy, aimed at leveraging offline and online activities, Alibaba said in a statement Sunday.

Easyhome, which started operations in 1999, is China’s second-biggest home improvement supplies and furniture chain operator, the statement said. The Beijing-based company reported more than 60 billion yuan in sales last year. Alibaba will support the digital transformation of Easyhome’s 223 stores by applying Alibaba’s expertise in cloud and logistics platforms, according to the statement.

The deal adds to Alibaba founder Jack Ma’s shopping spree in brick-and-mortar retailers that has shaken up supermarkets and department stores by linking Alibaba’s online business with physical stores — the premise of the “new retail” initiative.

Alibaba has been making sizable investments in the country’s retail sector since 2015, when it took a 20 percent stake in local electronics retailer Suning.com Co. for US$4.6 billion.

In November, Alibaba agreed to take a US$2.9 billion stake in China’s top hypermarket operator, Sun Art Retail Group Ltd.

“Physical stores serve an indispensable role during the consumer journey, and should be enhanced through data-driven technology and personalized services in the digital economy,” Alibaba chief executive officer Daniel Zhang said at the time.

Last year, Alibaba also led the US$2.6 billion privatization of Intime Retail Group Co. as part of its move into bricks and mortar activities. (SD-Agencies)

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