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First quarterly profit recorded

Chinese e-commerce company has posted a surprise profit, its first since listing in 2014.

Sales for the quarter to the end of March reached 76.2 billion yuan (US$11 billion) for the Beijing-based company, which last year acquired the online business in China for US retail giant Wal-Mart.

The quarterly profit for the quarter was 239 million yuan while analysts had predicted a loss of 851 million yuan.

“The strong results across the board reflect that the Chinese market is embracing our model of a high-quality online shopping experience,” says chairman/CEO Richard Liu.

Walmart increased its own stake in to 12.1 per cent after exchanging its China e-commerce business for a 5 per cent stake in last June. The etailer has since geared up its effort to integrate with Walmart’s business in China and its international resources.

In the first quarter, the Chinese company’s cross-border shopping site JD Worldwide partnered with Asda, Walmart’s UK supermarket retailer. is also spinning off its unprofitable internet finance unit and expanding its delivery systems in China, even using drones.

CFO Sidney Huang says the company will continue to invest in innovative technologies to ensure long-term growth.

The company is also reportedly considering increasing its investment in Indonesia, particularly with e-commerce company Tokopedia.

“For the next five years we will focus on building on our basic infrastructures, including warehouses and last-mile delivery system in Indonesia,” says Liu.

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