Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. Energy News .

Alibaba launches US shopping website
by Staff Writers
San Francisco (AFP) June 11, 2014

China's e-commerce giant Alibaba has launched an American shopping website as the company continues a deal binge ahead of a widely anticipated US listing.

The online shopping site, called 11 Main opened on a beta, or test, basis for consumers and is invitation-only in terms of the merchants it features, the site said in a statement.

Visitors are met with a "We're Opening Soon" message, which adds: "Our shop owners are currently unpacking and getting settled."

The site "carefully selects merchants, making some of the best and most differentiated boutiques available to shoppers", 11 Main said in a press release Wednesday.

"At 11 Main, we're passionate about the shops we invite and helping them grow," Mike Effle, president and general manager of 11 Main, said in the release.

11 Main, Inc. said it is an Alibaba Group company.

The marketplace, which hosts more than 1,000 merchants selling products ranging from clothing and interior goods to arts and crafts, will help Alibaba compete with Amazon and eBay, Dow Jones Newswires reported Wednesday.

The company plans to add other sales categories, charge as little as half the commission of other venues at 3.5 percent, and screen merchants for the quality of their goods and service, Dow Jones added.

The site is joining a crowded landscape with big players like Amazon, startups such as Etsy and traditional retailers with an online presence like Wal-Mart, the report said.

Separately, Alibaba announced its third deal in a week on Wednesday, saying it will absorb mobile browser developer UCWeb in what it called the "biggest" merger in the country's Internet industry.

- Planned listing -

The firm has stepped up acquisitions to expand beyond its traditional online shopping business ahead of a planned US listing that could raise around $15 billion, putting it on a par with Facebook's $16 billion IPO in 2012.

On Tuesday, the company unveiled an agreement with state-backed Shanghai Media Group to develop an entertainment platform and last Thursday said it will pay $192 million for a 50 percent stake in China's top football club, Evergrande.

Alibaba will take the one-third stake in UCWeb that it does not already own, it said in a statement.

"UC will be fully integrated into Alibaba Group. This integration will be the biggest merger in the history of China's Internet industry," Alibaba said, but gave no value for the deal.

UCWeb chief executive Yu Yongfu said the deal would value his company at more than $1.9 billion, according to a company memo posted online.

He compared the transaction to a move last year in which China's most popular search engine Baidu fully acquired smartphone app company 91 Wireless Websoft for that amount, showed the memo. A company spokesman confirmed its authenticity.

Alibaba said it would settle the deal through a combined cash and stock swap transaction.

The deal would draw more mobile device users to Alibaba platforms, which have lost out to more nimble competitors, analysts said.

"Alibaba is experiencing a drop in traffic on both personal computers and mobile devices, while its source of traffic has been unstable. So it's acquiring (UCWeb) to ensure traffic inflow," Zhuo Saijun, an analyst at Beijing-based consultancy Analysys International, told AFP.

Founded in 2004, UCWeb is a mobile Internet software and services provider based in the southern city of Guangzhou, which claims 500 million quarterly active users worldwide for its flagship browser.

- Expanding widely -

Alibaba operates China's most popular online shopping platform, Taobao, which is estimated to hold more than 90 percent of the online market for consumer-to-consumer transactions.

Previous acquisitions have allowed the e-commerce firm to expand into entertainment and logistics.

Last month, Alibaba acquired a 10.35 percent stake in Singapore Post, the city-state's main postal service, for $249 million as part of a strategic cooperation deal.

Prior to that, Alibaba and a private equity fund backed by the company's founder Jack Ma said in late April they would pay $1.22 billion for a stake in China's leading online video platform Youku Tudou.

The company has also made other forays into entertainment, including the purchase of a majority stake in Hong Kong-listed ChinaVision Media Group in March.



Related Links
Global Trade News

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

China, India are 'natural partners', envoy tells Modi
New Delhi (AFP) June 09, 2014
China's top diplomat told India's new Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday that the nuclear-armed neighbours should regard themselves as "natural partners" rather than rivals as they held talks in New Delhi. Speaking at a press conference in the Indian capital, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said Beijing could already detect the "wind" of change since Modi won a landslide election last m ... read more

Reducing emissions will be the primary way to fight climate change

Duke Energy to foot coal ash cleanup bill in Virginia and North Carolina

Canada, Australia PM say economy trumps climate change

Russia crisis boosts EU carbon deal: European Commission

Rice University produces carbon-capture breakthrough

Team Demonstrates Continuous Terahertz Sources at Room Temperature

Seeing how a lithium-ion battery works

Connecting dead ends increases power grid stability

Scotland says it's well on its way to cut emissions by as much as 80 percent

Snake-like buoys showing their energy mettle off Scottish coast

Base of operations set for one of Germany's largest wind farms

New York coast could be site of new wind farms, U.S. government says

New class of nanoparticle brings cheaper, lighter solar cells outdoors

Researchers Develop New Class Of Solar Material

Solar panels made cheaper and lighter by new class of nanoparticles

SunEdison Partners With Huantai For Chinese Expansion

AREVA to provide additional modernization services for Gosgen Facility in Switzerland

India nuclear reactor attains 'full capacity'

French police raid Areva over UraMin purchase

Nuclear waste dump on Aboriginal land invalid, court told

Transforming hydrogen into liquid fuel using atmospheric CO2

Researchers create microbes for direct conversion of biomass to fuel

Microalgae Capable Of Assimilating The Ammonium From Agri-Food Waste

Green and yellow - straw from oilseed as a new source of biofuels

Chinese lunar rover alive but weak

China's Jade Rabbit moon rover 'alive but struggling'

Chinese space team survives on worm diet for 105 days

Moon rover Yutu comes closer to public

Building blocks missing for 2015 climate pact: ministers

Climate talks: 'Raise your voice, not sea level' - UN

Deep sea fish remove million tonnes of CO2 a year from UK waters

EU greenhouse emissions fall more than expected: new data

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Space Media Network have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Space Media Network will be ignored and reported to Australian Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.