10 Oct '17, 10am

In Singapore, Amazon is up against a national sport and Alibaba

As Amazon.com Inc. pushes into Southeast Asia with a new venture into Singapore, the online retailer is facing some tough hurdles. Shopping in air-conditioned malls is practically a national sport, and e-commerce rivals moved in long ago. Delivery delays also marred Amazon’s debut in July, when on-the-ground operations began with Prime Now two-hour deliveries. Even when including orders placed on its main US website, Amazon lags behind local web store Lazada and its parent, Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. For the island country’s consumers, a store or a shopping centre is usually just minutes away. In fact there are too many stores, with mall operators scaling back operations after years of over-expansion. While retailers blame a weaker economy and increased web shopping, the country of 5.6 million trails most of the developed world when it comes to e-commerce. Just 4.6 per cen...

Full article: http://www.scmp.com/property/international/article/211464...

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