Alibaba is on a mission to be the internet’s everything store in mainland China and beyond, and it has upped its investment in capturing spend on the type of everyday items consumers always need. Things such as soap, paper towels, cereal and laundry detergent — staple goods that Alibaba is hoping will carry its reach into the rural areas in China it has yet to fully capture.
Chief Financial Officer Maggie Wu says her firm is committed and will spend billions more than their competitors when it comes to pushing the essential products that people use everyday.
“We are pretty much sure that we are going to further invest because we have that luxury,” Wu told analysts on a post-earnings conference call. “While the other company is talking about investing a billion dollars, we are willing to invest multi-times of that number.”
The expansion seems to be a thinly veiled threat at Alibaba’s main rival in China, JD.com. JD mainly sells electronics, but had been investing in home goods as of late. It also comes as Alibaba has announced its biggest topline growth since 2014, when the company went public.
“Rural and global investment and FMCG category could lower margin” in the short run, they warned.