Chinese online retailer JD.com is staking a claim in China’s intensely competitive package-delivery market by opening its logistics network to parcels shipped by consumers and businesses.
The move announced last week will roll out first for consumer and business customers in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou, allowing them to send items domestically using the company’s app or through pickup requests via the social-messaging app WeChat. The company, the e-commerce rival in China to Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., eventually expects to expand the service to cover residential and business deliveries between any two points in mainland China.
That would turn the network of warehouses, trucks and vans JD.com uses to move goods sold on its e-commerce marketplace into a broader delivery service competing with companies like China’s ZTO Express Inc. and SF Express, and resembling big express carriers like United Parcel Service Inc. and FedEx Corp.
The company says its network can reach 99 percent of the population, and delivers more than 90 percent of orders in one day or less.
“This marks the next step in leveraging the nationwide logistics network that JD has built over the past decade,” Zhenhui Wang, chief executive of JD Logistics, said in a statement.
JD.com’s move into parcel delivery comes as Amazon.com Inc. is preparing to launch a delivery service for business in the U.S. Amazon has invested heavily in branded trailers and air cargo operations to bolster its extensive network of distribution centers but relies more than JD.com does on outside carriers to haul and deliver its packages.
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