Since 2020, Chinese e-commerce company AliExpress has been making steady and strategic strides in the European e-commerce arena, posing a formidable challenge to Amazon's dominance in the market – specifically Spain.
Now its parent company, Alibaba is looking to shake up the scene even further with an announcement that it intends to bring Tmall, one of its popular e-commerce services in China, to Europe, in a move that signifies a strategic shift in Alibaba's approach to international e-commerce.
But here's the twist. While Alibaba had relied on AliExpress for its European operations, focusing on shipping goods from China, Tmall's entry will concentrate on selling local brands directly to local shoppers. It is still unclear if these two will integrate, leaving room for speculation on whether these platforms will coexist.
The company says it had begun conducting a pilot project for Tmall in Spain, with the aim of eventually expanding its presence across Europe. This strategic move comes after Alibaba's decision to divide its business into six autonomous units, granting each unit greater independence and agility.
Alibaba hopes to strengthen its presence in the global market, covering areas such as e-commerce, cloud services, and logistics, as it gradually departs from its previous focus on importing goods from China.
Still, the question of why Europe has no huge e-commerce companies like Amazon, Alibaba and eBay remains.