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Tesco 'Invests Millions' In Lazada Online Retailer

Published on Dec 10 2013 2:54 PM in Technology

Tesco 'Invests Millions' In Lazada Online Retailer

The UK’s largest retailer, Tesco, has bolstered its international presence online by acquiring a minority stake in Lazada, a seller of non-food goods in southeast Asia.

The British grocer, which is strengthening its e-commerce capabilities while reining in spending on store expansion of late, led a $250 million funding round into the Rocket Internet-backed Lazada company, alongside Access Industries, Investment AB Kinnevik and Verlinvest. 

Yesterday, Tesco multi channel director Robin Terrell remained coy about the investment amount, but was quoted by Bloomberg news agency as saying the deal is worth "tens of millions".

For the British retailer, it’s the first investment into a solely online player in the region and is reportedly “the starting point of close cooperation between the parties”.

According to Bloomberg, Tesco CEO Philip Clarke is spending $750m this year on developing its digital presence, so the latest move would fit nicely into the broader strategy.

Lazada provides online shopping in most of its nine non-domestic markets, including Thailand and Malaysia, where same-store sales for Tesco declined in the third quarter.

Lazada also provides an eBay-like marketplace where third-party retailers can sell their services, which will provide Tesco with the opportunity to offer products in markets where it doesn’t have stores or its own website, Robin Terrell said.

© 2013 - European Supermarket Magazine by Enda Dowling

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