Secondhand trading unicorn known for not vetting items promises to clean up

Secondhand trading unicorn Zhuanzhuan has responded to judicial investigations regarding their platform being used to buy and sell real and counterfeit invoices (发票). Recently, the court received a report from Zhuanzhuan (转转, meaning ‘pass on’ in Chinese) that, with a series of preventive measures added, the number of cases has dropped drastically, Chinese media Beijing Morning Newspaper is reporting.

Zhuanzhuan is the secondhand trading unit of Chinese Craigslist 58.com, used as a platform for buying and selling used phones, computers, as well as furniture, clothes, books, and vehicles.

Beijing special invoice for parking fees (Image Credit: Baidu)

Zhuanzhuan has known to be lack of vetting its listings. In 2017, one person with surname Zhou said that he sold his accumulated 543 Beijing special invoice for parking fees, at a price of RMB 200 on Zhuanzhuan app. After identification, above invoices are found to be real invoices. After the Haidian Court sentenced him to three months in prison for selling illegally the invoice, he was fined RMB 10,000.

In 2017, 26 out of 59 cases of the illegal sale of fake invoices that the Haidian Court saw originated from Zhuanzhuan.

58.com’s spinoff company Zhuanzhuan after receiving judicial advice said it has been reforming its platform. First of all, in the platform banned invoices and prescription drugs and other prohibited goods from the search function. It also added a quick entry for reporting of prohibited merchandise. After the rectification, the number of illegal sales of invoices handled by Haidian Courts involving transfer to the platform dropped drastically. At present, no new cases have been reported, the users cannot find any appropriate transaction information on the platform.

When a user searches “invoice” or “prescription” no results come out on Zhuanzhuan (Image Credit: Zhuanzhuan app screenshot)

This is not the first time Zhuanzhuan has been told clean up its platform. Last September, the secondhand trading platform sealed a deal with Foxconn and other tech giants to work on vetting secondhand phones exchanged over the platform.