China’s e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE: BABA) plans to open a physical mall in its headquarter city Hangzhou, China, aiming to combine the online and offline shopping experience.
According to a report from Caixin Global, the shopping center will be named “More Mall.” It will be built on 40,000 square meters of land and have five floors. The shopping mall is scheduled to open in April.
Alibaba is seeking to entering the physical retailing market by opening brick-and mortar stores in the recent years. The company has already dominated the online market in China. It’s now looking to expand its business to offline market.
Alibaba has already been testing its online-offline business by opening its grocery concept supermarket called Hema. Hema was first rolled out in 2015. It aims to provide “New Retail” experience to customers by combining online and offline shopping experience. Customers are allowed to order groceries on their smartphones and use Alibaba’s own online payment platform Alipay to make purchases. It also has traditional cashiers in the supermarket.
“Alibaba believes the future of New Retail will be a harmonious integration of online and offline,” said Daniel Zhang, CEO of Alibaba Group, in a statement in July.
Alibaba is not the only e-commerce company that wants to break into the physical retail market. U.S. e-commerce giant also entering the market by acquiring the Whole Food Market.
Alibaba is one of the best-performing stocks in the U.S. stock market. The shares have gained more than 90 percent this year.