City, AliExpress introduce “The Giant Project”
2019-09-06 Source:Hangzhou China

On Aug 21, China (Hangzhou) Cross-Border E-Commerce Comprehensive Pilot Area and Alibaba’s AliExpress inked an agreement to start “The Giant Project” for the city’s cross-border e-commerce development. The project will provide resources to top companies to sell their products abroad, fund startups engaged in the cross-border e-commerce business, and announce the city’s top ten brands in terms of overseas sales. 

The city has established China’s first comprehensive pilot area for cross-border e-commerce. In Hangzhou, cross-border e-commerce exports are growing steadily in a volatile trading environment due to better control of channels, independent brands and pricing rights. In the first half of this year, Hangzhou recorded CNY 42.87 billion in cross-border e-commerce imports and exports, up 23.7% YoY, and exports alone grew 19.7% to CNY 29.41 billion. Founded in Hangzhou, AliExpress is China's largest retail exports e-commerce platform, which has over 150 million buyers in 220 countries and regions outside China. The joint efforts of the pilot area and AliExpress will start a new journey of government-enterprise cooperation, empower more small and medium-sized cross-border e-commerce merchants, better promote cross-border e-commerce brands in the overseas market, and cultivate more “giants” in the cross-border e-commerce sector.

The two sides will work together to select the first batch of 300 Chinese enterprises in Hangzhou as "Good Sellers of China.” AliExpress will support them with a series of measures, including inbound marketing and targeted marketing training, to help the enterprises, which usually have stable supply chain capability, high-quality sources of goods and risk resistance capability, to expand overseas. While facilitating foreign exchange transactions for customs clearance and tax refund, the pilot area also provides support for cross-border e-commerce training, industry exchanges, personnel education, and closed-door meetings of key customers. The 300 companies will be entitled to the pilot area’s online comprehensive service platform, e-BOX innovative service, and overseas digital marketing support, for improving their online trading capabilities. As of June, Hangzhou merchants had opened 4,935 stores on the AliExpress platform, up 37.19% YoY.

AliExpress will also work with the pilot area to select Hangzhou’s top ten brands that expand overseas based on metrics including product capability (transaction value), brand capability (operation of store influence in overseas market), service capability (service scores), and operational capability (marketing activity performance and comprehensive operational metrics). “We target cross-border e-commerce sales of USD 10 million this year,” said Liu Rui, general manager of Hangzhou Frap E-commerce Co. Ltd. The company’s taps sell very well in Russia and it owns the largest market share. It plans to join the Giant Project and target different consumers in Russia and Indonesia with multiple brands and AliExpress’s digital marketing support. 

The pilot area will encourage enterprises to register trademarks overseas and acquire overseas brands via training, facilitate the operations of agencies that provide cross-border e-commerce, trademark registration, quality consulting and certification services. The pilot area will also guide enterprises to create their own brands, further improve the mechanism for cultivating, developing and protecting cross-border e-commerce export brands, and comprehensively enhance their brand-building capability.

The two sides also inaugurate a global startup innovation competition targeting foreign students studying in China, Chinese students that returned to China from abroad less than five years ago, and young foreign nationals of Chinese descent. The competition, which will last until next March, aims to select top cross-border e-commerce talents, help them start their own businesses and boost innovation in this sector. Applicants can sign up on the eBox innovation project service platform. The first batch of 10 startups will provide internships for foreign students in Hangzhou.

The Giant Project will enhance the cooperation between the city’s government and enterprises, boost local business development, unleash the potential of cross-border e-commerce innovation, encourage traditional foreign trade companies to engage in cross-border e-commerce, and promote more e-commerce brands to expand abroad, said Shi Huangkai, deputy director of Hangzhou Cross-Border E-commerce Comprehensive Pilot Area Office. 

AliExpress will make the best of its resources, work with the government and help Hangzhou companies to achieve a breakthrough in the cross-border e-commerce sector, according to Wang Mingqiang, general manager of AliExpress. The platform will help local startups to increase their brand awareness abroad and promote the city’s overall cross-border e-commerce development. 

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