Google has invested $550m in cash in China’s largest etailer JD.com as part of a strategic partnership that will see the two businesses collaborate on the joint development of retail solutions in a range of regions around the world, including Southeast Asia, the US and Europe.
By applying JD’s supply chain and logistics expertise and Google’s technology strengths, the two companies aim to explore “the creation of next generation retail infrastructure solutions, with the goal of offering helpful, personalized and frictionless shopping experiences“. JD will also join Google Shopping offering a curated selection of products to customers in multiple regions.
“This partnership with Google opens up a broad range of possibilities to offer a superior retail experience to consumers throughout the world,” said JD.com’s Chief Strategy Officer Jianwen Liao. “This marks an important step in the process of modernizing global retail. As we celebrate our June 18 anniversary sale, this partnership opens a new chapter in our history.”
“We are excited to partner with JD.com and explore new solutions for retail ecosystems around the world to enable helpful, personalized and frictionless shopping experiences that give consumers the power to shop wherever and however they want,” said Google Chief Business Officer Philipp Schindler.
JD has been working hard to raise its global profile lately, and in the UK in particular. Last year it invested in British-based online luxury fashion platform Farfetch and became a supporter of the Vogue/BFC Fashion Fund. When Prime Minister Theresa May visited China in February of this year it committed to selling £2bn of British products to Chinese customers via its platform.