Amazon – Alibaba competition toughens in Vietnam and Southeast Asia

By Quynh Nhu - Oct 02, 2018 | 12:47 PM GMT+7

TheLEADERTwo e-commerce giants Amazon and Alibaba are prompting significant moves to dominate Vietnam and Southeast Asia market.

Amazon – Alibaba competition toughens in Vietnam and Southeast Asia
Two e-commerce giants Amazon and Alibaba are competing to gain more shares in Vietnam as well as Southeast Asia. Photo: Pinterest

Amazon has recently competed with Alibaba in Vietnam as well as Southeast Asia market through the launch and localization of its services.

In the US, Amazon is a leading company in the field of e-commerce, accounting for nearly 45 per cent while Alibaba accounted for more than 55 per cent in China. In the past, both had intention of taking more shares in rival's market.

However, in the context of escalating US-China trade war, both are almost forced to give up their intentions and they choose to enter Southeast Asia.

In July 2017, Amazon entered the Southeast Asian market by taking a representative office in Singapore and then launched website along with Prime Now service. However, it did not undertake much activities until the end of last year.

In March 2018, Amazon announced its plan to land in Vietnam at the Vietnam Online Business Forum (VOBF) 2018 and it cooperated with a Vietnam's big logistics companies Vietnam Post to build a large warehouse near Noi Bai International Airport.

It recently announced that marketing website would be displayed in Vietnamese and published an official Facebook page for sellers from Vietnam, aiming to help them find information, documents and support more easily to start selling on Amazon.

Alibaba showed the same moves since its $500 million – investment in Lazada, the number one e-commerce platform in Southeast Asia.

In VOBF, a representative from Lazada Vietnam announced that they would assist Vietnamese exporters to Southeast Asia instead of domestic e-commerce as before.

A week later, Alibaba invested $2 billion into Lazada, raising its ownership to 83 per cent. At that time, the total value of Alibaba’s investment in Lazada reached $4 billion.

Lazada used a part of money received from Alibaba to speed up the construction of logistics infrastructure to address transportation's weaknesses in Southeast Asia.

In Indonesia, Alibaba Cloud's first data center was officially launched in last March, aiming to help the Indonesian government create 1,000 startups by 2020.

About Amazon, it was reported to plan to invest about $1 billion in this country to build Amazon Web Services specializing in cloud computing services. This investment will last for ten years.

Now, it can be said that in terms of e-commerce in Southeast Asia, Lazada has more advantages compared to Amazon but in terms of cross-border e-commerce, both are starting at the same point and Amazon seems to be a bit superior to Lazada.

According to statistics from Website Builder Expert, Amazon is the most powerful cross-border e-commerce empire, covering 58 countries with 13 Amazon platforms for 13 countries and having 1.2 billion visitors.

Alibaba ranks the second, covering 15 countries and its activities are heightened in China and Southeast Asia, with 1.07 billion visitors.