The Global eCommerce Newsletter 02.27.17

[Thailand] 11street Thailand launched by SK Planet
Korean-headquartered online marketplace 11street has launched in Thailand. Thailand is the fourth overseas market for SK Planet, a division of SK Telecom. It follows Turkey, Indonesia and Malaysia.

[South Korea] Jack Ma’s Ant Financial pushes into Korea with $200m investment
Ant Financial, financial arm of the Alibaba Group, is investing $200 million into South Korea’s Kakao Pay, a soon-to-launch subsidiary of messaging app KakaoTalk that will allow people to make cashless payments through their phones both for purchases on the web and in stores. KakaoTalk, first launched in 2010, has become a ubiquitous chat app in Korea with an array of companion apps, such as Kakao Music, Kakao TV, and Kakao Taxi.

Related: Alibaba’s Ant Financial extends global reach with first investment in the Philippines
Ant Financial made an undisclosed investment in Mynt, a financial venture from Globe Telecom. Globe is Philippines’ largest operation with 66.6 million subscribers, over 50 percent of the market.

[India] India’s Snapdeal to cut 600 staff, founders forego salary
Indian online marketplace Snapdeal is to lay off 600 employees and its founders will forego their salaries as the company struggles to turn a profit in a market increasingly dominated by rivals Flipkart and Amazon.

[U.K.] Amazon to create over 5,000 jobs in Britain in 2017
Amazon is set to create more than 5,000 jobs in Britain this year. The moves would take its permanent workforce in the country to 24,000. Amazon, along with other tech giants such as Google and Apple, has increased its commitment to Britain in the last year.

[Asia] Citi teams up with Amazon.com on e-commerce
Citi has teamed up with Amazon.com to roll out a shop-with-points program bundled with rebates and free shipping for a number of consumer markets across Asia-Pacific. Starting this month, Citi credit cardholders in Thailand who shop at Amazon.com will be able to use Citi’s global credit card rewards to pay for purchases at checkout. Cardholders in the Philippines can avail of the same program within the first half of 2017, along with Singapore and Australia. The plan is to roll out the shop-with-points program across Asia during 2017.
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