E-commerce in China – additional information
In 2013, the global digital buyer penetration rate ranged at 41.3 percent. In comparison, Chinese online buyer penetration amounted to 49.3 percent, about eight percent above global average. It was estimated that the number of online shoppers in China had reached more than three million in 2013.
Business-to-consumer (B2C) online commerce is an important component of China’s e-commerce market. In 2013, it accounted for about one percent of China’s gross domestic product (GDP). Even though the growth momentum of annual B2C e-commerce sales has slowed down since 2012, it still was forecast to reach approximately 30 percent by 2017. Tmall, a subsidiary of Alibaba, JD, and Suning were among the leading B2C e-commerce retailers in China as of 2013.
Since its initial public offering (IPO) at the New York Stock Exchange in September 2014, Alibaba became one of the largest internet companies worldwide. As of June 2014, it ranked second only to Google based on brand value. Alibaba Group is not solely focused on B2C business. It also dominates in consumer-to-consumer (C2C) and business-to-business (B2B) segments. Alipay, a third-party online payment solution brought forward by Alibaba, has cornered the online payment market in China.