Amazon to shut down e-commerce business in China


Amazon is set to withdraw its e-commerce business from the China market, says Chinese media reports.

According to the reports, the company’s departure from the market is imminent with an official statement expected this week, as staff are already seeking employment elsewhere.

Amazon will maintain its Kindle business along with its cross-border trade services, however, the main e-commerce business will be withdrawn along with any other businesses still operating in the market.

Amazon currently operates, as well as stores on Alibaba’s Tmall, including Kindle and Amazon Prime stores. It is not clear if the Amazon Prime business will continue.

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Amazon’s e-commerce business has struggled to gain share in China , which is dominated by local players including Alibaba and Together, they command 85% of the online retail market while Amazon has secured a 0.8% share of the e-commerce market.

Amazon launched in China in 2004 when it bought the country’s largest online bookseller for $75m. After updating its app store to include Chinese language support and services, Amazon China launched the Kindle in 2013 and rolled out Amazon Prime in 2016.

China boasts the world’s largest e-commerce market, which is forecast to hit $1.8trn in 2022. In Q3 last year, the market hit $186.13bn putting it firmly on track to pass the $1trn mark in 2018.

Yetunde Adegoke

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