March 25, 2013

Tesco bets big on online shopping

Tesco has outlined plans to expand online services to its major markets including China, Thailand and Turkey, as the UK-based retail major struggles to arrest dwindling sales in traditional stores.

By admin-demo

Tesco has outlined plans to expand online services to its major markets including China, Thailand and Turkey, as the UK-based retail major struggles to arrest dwindling sales in traditional stores.

The move comes in wake of high profits that the chain witnessed through online shopping, including the UK online grocery market, which is reporting an annual growth of 15%.

Tesco CEO Phillip Clarke recently announced plan to invest $750m over the year 2013 to develop its online shopping and other digital services.

The e-Commerce expansion is set to begin in Thailand with initial launch in Bangkok on 4 April 2013.

Subsequently, Tesco will expand the online market to China in June 2013 before closing the extensive expansion with launch in Turkey by early 2014.

Commenting on the development, Tesco e-Commerce international director Frans Falize said that Turkish launch in January 2014 would end its online expansion.

Citing China as a complicated market, Falize added, "We are taking it step-by-step. We are doing alot of work in China."

Tesco plans to launch its online services in 50 cities of China, which will only be decided after its performance in Shanghai, the company added.

Although the retailer is keen on duplicating its UK service format, it is likely to change few schemes to suit the local markets.

In Bangkok, Tesco will reduce the number of vans to 30 to cope up with traffic, besides increasing the size of refrigeration units to protect fresh and frozen foods from high temperature.

"A one-hour slot in Bangkok between 4 and 8pm would be suicidal," noted Falize.

He added that it would allow payment on delivery scheme in overseas markets that do not opt for online payments.

Tesco currently offers online grocery shopping in majority of its markets including the UK, Ireland, Korea, Czech Republic, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and Malaysia.