Capitaland, a real estate developer has disclosed that it entered into a deal with Alibaba to manage the online retail giant’s Shanghai headquarters. The deal will also see Capitaland, which owns and manages properties worth S$80 billion around the world, unveil an e-mall on the platform of Lazada’s Singapore unit. Lazada, a marketplace and online retailer which operates in Southeast Asia is backed by Alibaba.
Online with offline
With Capitaland being one of the biggest shopping mall landlords in Asia, the deal highlights how firms are engaged in efforts to link offline services with online content. Alibaba has recently been making moves aimed at growing its real estate presence.
“The key to unlocking the next stage of growth lies in blending physical and digital channels to create a seamless online and offline (O&O) experience that is sought after by consumers,” said the chief executive officer of CapitaLand, Lim Ming Yan, in a statement.
The deal with Alibaba will see Capitaland take over the management of one Alibaba Shanghai Center office tower which has a gross floor area of approximately 80,000 square meters excluding the car park. Capitaland will also be in charge of the management and pre-opening of a shopping podium which takes up a gross floor area of 20,000 square meters.
Omni-channel retail landlord
Additionally the mall landlord would launch a store on Lazada’s platform. This store, set to be launched before the year ends, will aggregate what retailers in Capitaland’s Singapore malls are offering and will position the firm as the pioneer omni-channel retail landlord in the city state.
Shoppers who spend on this store will then be able to collect what they purchase from Capitaland malls. Initially there will be two click-and-collect lounges; one at Bugis+ and another at Plaza Singapura. In these lounges shoppers will be able to collect as well as return their parcels. These collection lounges will be unmanned. The lounges will also have a product-testing bench as well as fitting rooms and this will serve to give shoppers an enhanced shopping experience.
Resources will be allocated by both Lazada.sg and Capitaland in order to onboard retailers. The platform will also be promoted to shoppers as the initiative is gradually scaled up in the course of the coming two years. Some of the incentives shoppers will get include earning loyalty points. According to Capitaland offering click-and-collect options for purchases will pull shoppers to malls owned by the firm and cut the costs of last-mile delivery for retailers.