Alibaba Group plans to invest an additional USD1 billion into the Southeast Asia e-commerce platform Lazada to increase its share ratio from 51% to 83%.
Lazada was established in 2012 and headquartered in Singapore. By the end of March 2017, the company had 23 million monthly active users. By investing in Lazada, Alibaba is able to reach six markets, including Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, the Philippines and Vietnam.
In April 2016, Alibaba invested USD1 billion to gain control of Lazada from the German start-up incubator Rocket Internet. Apart from Alibaba, Lazada's other investors include the company's management and Temasek. Temasek maintains a close relationship with Alibaba and it is also one of the early investors of Alibaba.
During the first round of investment, Alibaba valued Lazada at USD1.5 billion, while Lazada's implicit valuation has reached USD3.15 billion in the new investment.
Maximilian Bittner, chief executive officer of Lazada, said during a media interview that the additional investment in Lazada will allow Alibaba to implement global expansion and access users via an unrivaled portal. At present, e-commerce penetration in Southeast Asia is only about 3%; therefore, the cooperation is an important step to promote change.