An investment fund backed by Chinese e-commerce giant JD.com has made a strategic investment in fresh-produce chain store Qiandama.
Qicheng Venture Capital’s move comes as Chinese online shopping companies continue to expand into offline retail channels. No figures have been released about the investment, which was reported by Chinese media quoting insiders.
It is not JD.com’s first move in this direction. Two years ago it invested RMB4.3 billion (US$632 million) in fresh-produce supermarket franchise Yonghui Superstores to co-operate in wholesale, logistics, financial services and big data.
Just three months ago, JD.com’s supermarket division said it plans to open 5000 maternity experience stores within three years to help mothers in smaller cities buy safe maternity and baby products.
The company is also planning to open one million convenience stores to service rural residents, and last month launched JD Home, an offline consumer electronics store in Shenzhen, under a partnership with Wal-Mart.
Founded in 2012, Qiandama has more than 260 community stores selling more than 500 types of vegetables, fruits, seafood, meat and cooked food. The company previously raised two rounds of financing.