Tesco acquires minority stake in Lazada

11 December 2013 (Last Updated December 11th, 2013 05:06)

British retail major Tesco has expanded its online footprint by acquiring a minority stake in Lazada, a seller of non-food goods to customers in Southeast Asia.

Tesco group multichannel director Robin Terrell said the investment in South East Asia’s largest e-commerce retailer continues its strategy of developing leading multichannel businesses in core growth markets.

"Lazada is an exciting, pioneering business which has developed a market-leading offer in each of its five markets in just 18 months," Terrell added.

"As South East Asia’s 600m onsumers begin to use smartphone technology to access retailers online, Lazada has established a strong position from which to grow."

The retailer is seeking to establish multichannel leadership, in a move to differentiate itself from other retailers like Aldi, Lidl and Waitrose.

Tesco chief executive officer Philip Clarke said that the company is investing $750m this year to develop online shopping and other digital services as customers increasingly shop for smartphones, tablets and computers online.

Tesco is facing competition from discounters and Internet grocers. It reported declining sales in all its markets, this quarter.

Lazada, founded by German venture capital group Rocket Internet in 2012, retails non-food goods including clothing, homeware and electronic goods, to Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam and the Philippines.