The company added an additional $1 billion investment in June 2017, which took its stake up to 83 percent, and solidified the brand's influence over Lazada.
Chinese multinational and e-commerce giant Alibaba has announced that it is investing an additional $2.6 billion in digital marketplace Lazada, a major player in the Southeast Asian e-commerce market, and appointing one of its most senior executives as the firm's new CEO.
The company did not disclose how its stake will change with the latest investment, but it's safe to say that Alibaba is gearing up for an intense battle in South East Asia, following Amazon's launch in Singapore and Shopee's recent expansion to win consumers.
Following the investment, Lucy Peng, who now serves as Lazada Group chairwoman, will take over the role of chief executive officer, replacing founder Max Bittner, who will become a senior advisor to Alibaba.
Rival firms are already plowing billions of dollars building extensive logistics infrastructure in the region.
The appointment of Peng signals the importance of Southeast Asia in Alibaba's overseas expansion plan. Chinese technology companies see Southeast Asia as a huge new market. Global e-commerce giant Amazon entered the region a year ago, but is so far active only in Singapore.
The region's online economy is expected to grow by as much as $200 billion by 2025, with this growth largely driven by eCommerce.
"If India was the first key battleground between US and Chinese vertical-leaders, then SoutheastAsia is surely the second", said Lloyd.
Singapore state investor Temasek Holdings and Lazada management are the only other stakeholders in Lazada. The online retailer conducts operations in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines, and Vietnam.