Alibaba (and some other big e-commerce players too!) have their eyes set on Zalando – Europe's leading online fashion platform. Zalando has a massive amount of customer data along with a billion website visits every year. Alibaba wants to invest billions in expansion into Europe.
E-commerce big fish are salivating over Zalando. Europe's fashion leader has a shareholder structure that is dominated by finance investors. According to businessoffashion.com, Baader Helvea's Volker Bosse says "we see potential that these investors could sell if the offered price is right."
Dongxii Founder Marcel Mönsch
Dongxii founder Marcel Mönsch specialises in trade between Germany and China. He stated in an interview with Handelsblatt reported on by onlinehaendler-news.de that "Alibaba wants to invest more than 13 billion euros in global expansion over the next five years." Since Alibaba is already active in Belgium, and that the Chinese giant wants to take on the rest of Europe is no secret. Billions are indeed being invested by Alibaba in Europe, Münsch definitely believes Alibaba will begin investing in companies in Europe soon. He feels Zalando is a huge target for Alibaba because, "The company is interesting not only because of its access to 25 million end customers. Currently, Zalando is also relatively cheaply valued on the stock markets."
Buy Low, Sell High
Zalando already has contact to Alibaba, selling their own zLabels goods at Tmall in China, albeit unsuccesfully. Their own flagship store on the marketplace has recently closed again as well.
According to ARD, the Zalando share reacted positively to the interview with Münch: on the Tradegate trading platform, the security rose slightly after trading. On Thursday, the share price rose by 6.1% to €24.36. One trader described the speculation about Zalando as "not entirely new, but the newspaper report has given them new food".
All Quiet On The Zalando Front
So far, Zalando has remained quiet about the whole thing, with a spokeswoman simply saying that "We believe in the long-term strategy and value that the Zalando platform creates for all players in the fashion industry." The thought of Alibaba buying a company like Zalando is just more proof that Alibaba – and the rest of China (JD.com, etc.) – are coming to Europe.