Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Why Chinese portals withdrew from B2B...

As you can imagine, a news item with this heading caught my eye. There seems to be some confusion between e-commerce in general and B2B activity in the article but the general thesis appears to be that B2C online marketplaces are the current flavour of the month among the Chinese portals:

B2C business has also become a "new continent" for traditional B2B (Business To Business) and C2C (Customer to Customer) websites. has cooperated with famous brands like Haier, Adidas, Lenovo, Motorola and Nokia to open "stores-in-store". Having signed a strategic cooperation agreement with China Paradise Electronics Retail Limited, the biggest chain retailer in China, eBay EachNet also declared to run the B2C business in the same form of shops for brand goods. Digital products and fashion clothes have become the pilot fields for several C2C websites entering the B2C field.

The article also talks quite a lot about and, the grand-daddies of Chinese portals.

Some of the phrasing perhaps works better in Chinese than it does in English: "B2C is taken by portal websites as chicken ribs without much meat but a dainty to professional e-commerce websites"!

We suspect that the real B2B specialists will not be unhappy to see flavour of the month dragging the big names in another direction. The number of new business models that some of them have pursued increasingly resembles dress changes in a fashion show. Where next boys?

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