JD.Com Poaches From 7-Eleven to Open 1 Million Convenience Stores–Yicai Global

What happened: E-commerce giant JD.com has reportedly poached five manager-level staff members from Seven-Eleven’s Beijing office as its brick-and-mortar stores continue to expand across China. According to Yicai, the new employees will help launch a line of mini-marts, adding to JD.com’s existing convenience stores. This past April, JD.com announced grand ambitions to open 1,000 physical convenience stores every day for the rest of the year, mainly through a franchise model. Over the next five years, CEO Liu Qiangdong has also said, the company will establish 1 million stores across China.

Why it’s important: JD.com’s brick-and-mortar expansion is able to benefit from the strong supply chain that helped grow an e-commerce empire. The company’s decision to develop convenience stores via a franchise model has had some downsides, however, including inconsistency among marketing and business models of individual stores. As it seeks to follow up on its ambitious plans, JD.com may be seeking more and better management in order to beat out well-established competitors.

Bailey Hu is based in China’s hardware capital, Shenzhen. Her interests include local maker culture, grassroots innovation and how tech shapes society, as well as vice versa.

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