What happened: Alibaba-backed e-commerce platform Lazada has named former Taobao executive Leo Chow as the new CEO of its Malaysian operations. Chow had been the regional executive vice president of Lazada Malaysia since 2018 before taking on the role of CEO in January. Before Lazada, Chow spent eight years at Alibaba’s cross-border retail platform Taobao Global and helped introduced a new model of cross-border business based on social e-commerce.
Why it’s important: Singapore-based Lazada, one of the biggest players in Southeast Asia’s e-commerce, now operates in six countries in the region. Alibaba acquired control of Lazada for in 2016 and upped its stake in the company by investing another $2 billion in early 2018. Alibaba is betting on the region’s potential growth with aggressive expansion in hope to diversify and decrease its reliance on its home market.