BEIJING, April 2, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Intime Retail (Group) Company Limited ("Intime Retail", 01833.HK) and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. ("Alibaba Group") are pleased to announce that Alibaba Group will make HK$5.37 billion strategic investment in Intime Retail. The two giants will integrate respective superior resources with a view to establishing a future commercial infrastructure system which fuses online and offline shopping and will be open to the whole society to help promote integration between the bricks-and-mortar business and the Internet economy. The two parties will also form a joint venture to accelerate the setting-up of the system.
As part of the cooperation, Alibaba Group will make the HK$5.37 billion investment through subscribing to new shares and convertible bonds to be issued by Intime Retail. Upon completion of the transaction, Alibaba Group will hold a 9.9 percent equity stake in Intime Retail and approximately HK$3.71 billion worth of convertible bonds issued by Intime Retail. As agreed between the two parties, within the next three years, to the extent as permitted by applicable laws and regulations, Alibaba Group may convert the convertible bonds into Intime Retail's ordinary shares, thus making Alibaba Group's ultimate stake in Intime Retail not lower than 25 percent.
Intime Retail is a leading business group in the PRC, mainly engaged in operations and management of department stores and shopping malls. As of the end of 2013, Intime Retail operated a total of 36 stores in total, including 28 department stores and 8 shopping malls. In particular, after 16 years of efficient operation, Intime Retail has owned a commodity database system covering up to nearly 10 million commodities as well as a membership system comprising up to 1.5 million members.
Previously, Alibaba Group and Intime Retail already had many attempts at fusing online and offline business. During the 2013 double-11 festival, all of Intime Retail's shopping malls participated in Tmall's 1111 shopping carnival, being the pioneer to trial the consumption model of offline selecting and online purchasing & payment. During the "3.8 Mobile Taobao Life Festival" in 2014, Intime Retail once again collaborated with "Mobile Taobao" and Alilpay by launching virtual shopping cards which were hugely popular among consumers.
Following the strategic investment, Alibaba Group and Intime Retail will fully integrate their membership systems and payment systems and at the same time achieve the connection of product systems. Based on this, the two sides will create an infrastructure for online-to-offline (O2O) commerce, which enables seamless connection for O2O transactions, membership marketing, and service. Open to the whole community, this infrastructure will serve all major offline business groups, retail brands, and retailers.
SHEN Guojun, Chairman of Intime Retail (Group) Co., commented that Intime Retail (Group) Co. is an enterprise which keeps innovating and pursues opening up and cooperation. It is imperative to learn and apply technology, which is advancing rapidly. Customers are changing us and Intime should embrace the change of consumers more actively. The "new Intime" is expected to blaze a trail into the future of retail, truly be more responsive to consumer demand and bring more diverse and better experience to consumers. This is the dream shared by all Intime staff.
Daniel Zhang, COO of Alibaba Group observed that commerce would grow increasingly electronic-based in the future and the real economy and the Internet economy will integrate and complement each other based on technologies such as big data and cloud computing. Alibaba Group and Intime Retail cooperate in the hope of building up an open infrastructure to eventually help all department stores, shopping centers, and other retail formats achieve perfect integration of the real economy and the Internet economy.
CHEN Xiaodong, CEO of Intime Retail (Group) Co. noted that the retail in the future would follow a brand-new model which is completely different from existing ones and puts customers first, integrates experience and bases competition on efficiency. It will be a cute and omnipotent "little monster." The new Intime will thoroughly fulfill the mission and responsibility of a "big data-driven shopping solution provider" and Alibaba Group and Intime Retail will team up to usher in a new era for China's retail sector in the future.
About Intime Retail (Group) Co., Ltd.
Intime Retail (Group) Co., Ltd. ("Intime Retail" or the "Company", Hong Kong Stock Exchange stock code: 01833, together with its subsidiaries, the "Group") is a large diversified retail chain Group which major business is retailing, shopping centres and E-commerce. Intime Retail was listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in 2007. In Hong Kong, "Intime Department Store (Group) Company Limited" was officially renamed as "Intime Retail (Group) Company Limited" on 20 March 2013. Intime Retail has become one of the enterprises with most frequent cooperation with domestic luxurious brands. The Group is accelerating the development of consolidated entities in middle- and high-class cities in the country. In the mean time, its retail models upgrade and innovate continuously from traditional retailing business to large shopping centres and e-shopping, "Intime Department Stores," "Intime Shopping Centres," and "Yintai.com" formed the three major business operation models which possess the characteristics of "Intime."
The press release is distributed by Wonderful Sky Financial Group on behalf of Intime Retail (Group) Company Limited.
SOURCE Intime Retail (Group) Company Limited