Kao reaches cross-border digital deal with JD Worldwide

By Lucy Whitehouse

- Last updated on GMT

Kao reaches cross-border digital deal with JD Worldwide
Beauty giant Kao has signed up with e-retail platform JD Worldwide, in the latest in a string of industry moves in the Asia region to facilitate cross-border trade of personal care products.

In what China Tech News has described as a “strategic cooperation agreement​” between the two companies, Kao will launch its flagship store on the JD Worldwide platform as soon as next month.

It builds on the success of the previously-established supply partnership that the two companies began in 2014, and follows Kao’s first step into cross-border retail in China with Alibaba last year.

The new deal with JD Worldwide will allow Japanese Kao, which owns popular skin care brands Biore, Kanebo and Molton Brown, to court Chinese consumers with greater ease, tapping into the rising trend of cross-border deals that are facilitating trade with China.

Cross-border in the spotlight

JD Worldwide is the cross-border arm of one of China’s leading e-commerce retailers, JD.com, and was launched last year in response to rising demand among Chinese consumers to be connected with international brands.

With established e-commerce players in China now increasingly facilitating cross-border trade, brands and consumers alike enjoy a greater element of protection from counterfeit vendors.

We will be able to provide direct sales to customers and make sure products are genuine​,”  confirmed Shen Haoyu, the JD Worldwide CEO, on the platform’s launch last year.

Online shoppers in China expanded their foothold to more than 100 countries and regions in 2015, the most sought after products are reported to be cosmetics and skin care products.  

Kao and China

Kao already enjoys a cross-border e-commerce presence in China, following a similar deal last year with rival e-tailer, Alibaba.

Kao operates a site on the Tmall Global platform, which is the industry-leading space for online cross-border sales; launching an equivalent new site on the JD Worldwide platform will further boost its presence in China.

The personal care company is ‘proactively investing’ in overseas development, committing ¥40 billion last year to expand its manufacturing capacity in Thailand and Indonesia and creating ranges that better serve Southeast Asia.

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