Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd has posted a smaller-than-expected rise in quarterly revenue as COVID-19 curbs and a worsening economic outlook stifled consumer spending. Retail spending in China has sagged this year alongside the government's strict zero-COVID-19 policies that have led to frequent snap lockdowns and hurt economic activity, reports Reuters. Alibaba has also had to contend with stiff competition from the likes of Pinduoduo and ByteDance's Douyin - the Chinese version of Tiktok - which have expanded their e-commerce offerings and taken more market share. The company has also yet to fully recover from a regulatory crackdown on the tech sector that has curtailed growth opportunities. Revenue grew 3% to 207.18 billion yuan (€28.04 billion) in the three months ended 30 September, compared with a Refinitiv consensus estimate of 208.62 billion yuan (€28.2 billion) drawn from 25 analysts.
Russian online retailer Ozon Holdings said on Monday it was opening an office in Shenzhen in China to boost cross-border sales to Russian shoppers on its platform. Russian companies have been rapidly boosting business ties with China as firms grapple with unprecedented Western sanctions. It follows a similar move into Türkiye earlier this year by the e-commerce outfit, and comes at time when the Russian economy is trying to pivot away from Western markets and forge new supply chains with the likes of China, Turkey and Iran. Ozon noted in a statement that it already had 10,000 Chinese sellers offering goods to Russian customers on its marketplace, with China accounting for 95% of sales through its cross-border sales unit, Ozon Global. "Chinese products are in high demand in Russia," Ozon noted, adding that, 'the most popular orders from China are usually electronics - smartphones, laptops and computer parts - as well as small appliances and clothing.'