This week, Alibaba Group’s mapping service Amap rolled out a feature enabling people to draw hearts with their feet, just in time for Valentine’s Day.
In other news, the group’s logistic service Cainiao Network is expanding its Polish smart locker service by combining resources with global delivery company DHL eCommerce Solutions.
Also this week, Alibaba’s marketplace for bargain hunters Taobao Deals rang in the Lunar New Year with 10% off more than 130,000 products.
Amap Helps Users Say “I Love You” on Valentine’s Day
With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, the group’s navigation platform Amap introduced a tool this week to help users on foot or bike to draw a heart shape with their route.
Users will also be able to write “520”, which is pronounced like “I love you” in Mandarin, on the map.
The feature is built on Amap’s grid-based route planning algorithm, which evaluates available paths through grids. The algorithm uses these grids to create text or visuals with rounded corners, like the heart shape and “520” form in Amap.
The algorithm illustrates how Amap artistically captures the 3D environments where we live.
Cainiao And DHL Join Forces in Polish Logistics Tie-Up
Alibaba’s logistics arm Cainiao Network has reached a deal with DHL eCommerce Solutions, the e-commerce logistics expert of Deutsche Post DHL Group, to build the largest package access point network in Poland.
In the first phase of the agreement, the companies will invest 60 million euros ($64.4 million) to consolidate their 1,200-strong locker networks and expand the smart locker chain across Poland.
DHL operates a network of self-pickup sites in Poland. The two companies intend to build upon this infrastructure and extend the network to strategic areas to improve last-mile delivery services in Poland. DHL now has over 90,000 pick-up locations across Europe.
Factories Start Year of the Rabbit Strong on Taobao Deals
Alibaba’s online marketplace Taobao Deals launched its Year-Starter campaign this week to give consumers a 10% discount on over 130,000 products in partnership with 10,000 domestic factories.
More than two-thirds of Chinese factories supplying Taobao Deals launched production earlier than usual this year, showing confidence in consumption, according to the platform.
After the Lunar New Year holiday, some factories in China’s eastern provinces, including Guangdong, Zhejiang, Jiangsu, Fujian, and Shandong resumed their production lines one week early than in previous years.
Established in 2020, Taobao Deals had 280 million annual active users in the 12 months ended Dec. 31 last year. Paid orders on the platform more than doubled year-on-year in the third quarter, according to the group’s latest earnings report.
How Alibaba Empowers Brand Partners to Be Carbon Neutral
Alibaba Group is developing standards for low-carbon goods to improve the supply and quality of sustainable products while working with brand partners to increase consumer awareness.
“By leveraging the efforts and resources of the wider community, we have been able to address the consumer sector’s carbon footprint more effectively and innovatively,” said Alibaba’s Chief Marketing Officer Chris Tung at a virtual side event during the United Nations Economic and Social Council’s 2023 Partnership Forum in January.
Bain Sees China Luxury Market To Turn Positive Before March – Report
Luxury consumption in China will resume its upwards trajectory before March as China lifts pandemic-related restrictions on movement, according to a new report by consultancy Bain & Co.
“We believe 2022 was a reset, not a harbinger of more distress,” the authors of Bain’s report said, including senior partner Bruno Lannes. “We expect positive conditions to return before the end of the first quarter.”
Bain identified Very Important Clients (VICs) as a key force behind sustained sales in China’s luxury market during the pandemic. Shoppers who buy more than three times a year account for over 50% of sales said the report, quoting executives at Alibaba’s Tmall Luxury Pavilion.
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