Tesco picks up small stake in Rocket's Lazada

Mon Dec 9, 2013 3:14pm EST

A worker helps a customer load her car with groceries at a Tesco click and collect point in Leicester, central England, August 29, 2013. REUTERS/Darren Staples

A worker helps a customer load her car with groceries at a Tesco click and collect point in Leicester, central England, August 29, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Darren Staples

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(Reuters) - The world's third-biggest retailer Tesco Plc (TSCO.L) has bought a small stake in Lazada, the Southeast Asian online retail company said on Monday.

Lazada, founded by German venture capital group Rocket Internet in early 2012, said it had secured about $250 million in funding from investors including the British grocer, Access Industries, Investment AB Kinnevik and Verlinvest. (link.reuters.com/gep35v)

Bloomberg reported that Tesco had invested "tens of millions" of pounds in the online marketplace, citing the British grocer's Multichannel Director Robin Terrell.

The company declined to provide more details.

Tesco said last week that it aimed to dominate a new multi-channel era - selling a range of goods from bread to clothing and banking products from its supermarkets and online, rather than slashing food prices to win market share from rivals such as Wal-Mart's (WMT.N) Asda.

Lazada, which sells consumer electronics, household goods, toys and sports equipment in Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam, raised $100 million in June from investors, in a bid to lift Southeast Asia from its status as an e-commerce backwater.

(Reporting by Richa Naidu in Bangalore; editing by David Evans)

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