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eBay moves into China with new local site eBay Style

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eBay has moved into China through a partnership with Chinese business Xiu.com.

Their new site, eBay Style, takes products and brands sold on eBay.com into a huge and expanding market. Xiu.com will handle sales, logistics and customer service while also curating and translating the eBay inventory.

The new site promises a fully localised online shopping experience, with a product search and browsing experience suited to Chinese consumers. Its launch follows growing demand from Chinese consumers visiting eBay in English.

“Today Chinese consumers are increasingly coming to eBay and we have seen a 40% year on year increase of goods bought by Chinese consumers navigating eBay.com in English,” said Melanie Tan, vice president for eBay. “We believe that in the future Chinese consumers will use eBay as a passport to global fashion styles, especially for leading women’s brands and accessories and menswear because our broad selection of new, branded and designer merchandise will be unmatched in China.”

George Ji, chief executive of Xiu.com, said: “Our mission is to bring the best of the world to China, so eBay, with its global access, is an ideal partner for us. Through our curation efforts, we also hope to introduce a new, more inspiring buying experience to Chinese consumers.”

Ms Tan added: “Our long-term vision is to connect Chinese consumers to global products and brands that they want and love in a seamless and safe way. By partnering with Xiu.com we are able to surface our best inventory to Chinese consumers while providing a simple and easy shopping experience.”

Jon Copestake, retail analyst at the Economist Intelligence Unit, said the move was a critical one for eBay. “For eBay entry into China, with a local partner in place to smooth the way, is a necessary strategy,” he said, “especially after a failed first attempt ten years ago.

“Not only is China's ecommerce market large, but it is growing quickly. China's online sales rose by over 50% last year. And there are no signs of a slowdown, with domestic player Alibaba reporting 71% jump in Q2 sales this week. However, eBay may struggle with a market that is already developed, crowded and highly competitive. Alibaba, Tencent and Baidu dominate online sales and Xiu.com operates in a luxury niche that sits outside eBay's traditional mainstream marketplace approach.”
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