Intensifying regulation of livestream e-commerce has cast a shadow over the upcoming Hong Kong IPO for Tencent-backed Kuaishou. Alibaba beat market expectations for its December quarter. The “Singles Economy” boosted online sales of diminutive home appliances and food. Tencent-backed job listing site Boss Zhipin gears up for a US IPO.
China’s e-commerce and retail market offers a fire hose of products, choices, business models, rapidly changing content, and more. Here’s what you need to know about China’s online retail market for the week of Jan. 28 – Feb. 3. 3.
Kuaishou IPO risk factors
Stricter regulation of e-commerce livestreams, a potential revenue growth engine for short video app Kuaishou, brings uncertainty to the Douyin rival’s imminent Hong Kong listing. Analysts have said increased regulation from Beijing could slow the booming market’s momentum and harm the profitability potential of involved companies. (SCMP)
Alibaba Group topped market revenue expectations for the December quarter and reported first-ever profits for its cloud computing business. The company’s revenue in the December quarter grew 37% year on year to RMB 221.08 billion ($33.88 billion), while non-GAAP diluted earnings per share was RMB 22.03, an increase of 21% year over year. (TechNode)
The Singles Economy, involving the production and consumption of goods and services aimed at singles or people who live alone, is on the rise in China, according to reports from Pinduoduo and Nielsen. Beijing’s call for people to limit travel during the upcoming weeklong Spring Festival holiday to prevent another coronavirus surge has proved a boost to the trend, which involves marketing petite home appliances such as rice cookers and refrigerators and smaller food portions. Market segmentation is on the rise in China as the silver economy for senior citizens and the “small town youth economy” for youngsters in lower-tier cities and towns gain recognition. (Pandaily)
Job board IPO
Chinese online job listing site Boss Zhipin, also known as Zhipin.com, has chosen Goldman Sachs and UBS as underwriters for its US stock market debut through which it aims to raise $300 million. The company plans to go public this year. CEO Zhao Peng said in July 2019 that the company is already profitable. (IPO Zaozhidao, in Chinese)
Holiday online spending surge
Parcels for Spring Festival purchases processed by Alibaba’s Cainiao Logistics network from Jan. 20 to 31 surged 50% compared with the corresponding time period preceding last year’s holiday (Jan. 6 to 17), highlighting an increase in online purchases for the holiday. (Sina, in Chinese)
Online travel regains investor interest
Hong Kong-based online travel platform Klook announced the completion of a $200 million Series E led by Aspex Management and followed by existing investors including Sequoia Capital China, SoftBank Vision Fund 1, Matrix Partners China, and Boyu Capital. (Caixin Global)