Alibaba Group has expanded its stake in Lazada to 81 percent, up from the 51 percent that it purchased last year. Both companies announced that Alibaba spent some $1 billion in buying out most other shareholders in Lazada. As it stands, only Lazada management and Temasek Holdings Ltd remain holding the minority share.
Jack Ma, Alibaba CEO, has not kept his intentions of taking the online retailer global. The company is currently looking to Southeast Asia for its first expansion plan; and is using Lazada to gain a foothold in the region. In addition to this, Ma announced last year that Alibaba would be using Malaysia as its regional logistics hub.
The Chinese e-commerce giant is not the only one looking towards Southeast Asia. Rival JD.com is also beginning to make inroads, while rumours have been spreading about a potential investment from US-based Amazon. Should the rumours prove true, it could lead to the first direct competition between Alibaba and Amazon.