Lazada Group, Southeast Asia’s largest e-commerce site, has raised $1 billion in equity funding. The transaction will increase Alibaba’s total investment in Lazada to over $2 billion.
The investment came from Alibaba Group, which will increase its 51 percent stake in the company to 83 percent.
Alibaba will purchase shares from certain Lazada shareholders at an implied valuation of $3.15 billion. One of those shareholders is longtime Lazada Group investor, Rocket Internet, which intends to sell its remaining 8.8 percent stake in the company to Alibaba for $276 million, Reuters reports.
Following the investment Lazada will continue to operate as its own separate entity.
During the last year, both Lazada and Alibaba have worked on a number of initiatives to push e-commerce in Southeast Asia and Alibaba’s plans to gain a greater foothold in in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.
These initiatives include the establishment of an e-fulfillment center in Malaysia which forms part of Alibaba’s Electronic World Trading Platform strategy, building “Thailand 4.0” and launching a Taobao Collection in Singapore and Malaysia to allow local consumers to shop from China.
“The e-commerce markets in the region are still relatively untapped, and we see a very positive upward trajectory ahead of us,” Daniel Zhang, CEO of Alibaba Group, said in a statement.“We will continue to put our resources to work in Southeast Asia through Lazada to capture these growth opportunities.”