Alibaba’s Double Play Strategy on Offline Retail Digital Transformation

Alibaba’s Double Play Strategy on Offline Retail Digital Transformation

Chinese ecommerce giant Alibaba has launched an Operating System, a product of a collaborative effort of its key consumer units Ele.me and Koubei, to enable the digital transformation of supermarket chains and brick and mortar stores to make them more efficient.

The platform will onboard leading retail players into the ecosystem giving them the opportunity to leverage its capabilities in ecommerce from Taobao and TMall, Financial Technology services from Ant Financial, Logistics from Fengniao and Digital Marketing from Alimama.

Over 10,000 supermarkets and about 200,000 retail chain outlets spread across 676 cities in China are currently utilizing the operating system.

Supermarket chain Vanguard saw its orders via on demand home delivery platform Ele.me jumped 73 percent each month right from when it was on-boarded while that of Century Mat tripled.

This initiative is part of Alibaba’s A100 Strategic Partnership Programme – an Open Sesame Double Play strategy to help firms rexecute digital transformation. Alibaba has earned its category king status online and wants to offer similar services to offline players as well.

Konga’s redesign which has transformed it beyond offering a single play ecommerce service can learn from Alibaba because Nigeria’s retail industry contributes 33 percent to the total GDP and 45 percent of total employment in Nigeria. Sparkle, a startup, wants to help retailers mitigate the various challenges which they are plagued with. Those challenges dampen their business success. It will do this by delivering customer experience support services ranging from inventory management, invoicing statements, foreign exchange services, and Point Of Sale. Also, it will create a digital framework for them to register their companies, tax and domains, as it wants to connect the dots in business advisory and regulatory services for small and medium retail players.

The current friction which exists between Nigerian offline retailers and consumers can be fixed to make them achieve efficiency through digitization.

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