Alibaba’s Brick and Mortar Move

Chinese eCommerce giant Alibaba has made another big purchase in its recent investment spree, agreeing to pay $692 million for a roughly 35 percent stake in Chinese department store operator Intime Retail Group.

Alibaba says it will likely take a 9.9 percent equity stake in Intime for $214 million and subscribe to $478 million in convertible bonds.

The deal will allow give Alibaba access to Intime’s more than two dozen department stores across China, through deals that will allow consumers to pay for goods with their smart phones.

Alibaba has been in a ongoing race with its two main rivals – gaming and social media company Tencent and search company Baidu – to forge relationships with smaller domestic partners in order to dominate both the online and real-world shopping experience.


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