Chinese tech giant Alibaba is opening its first European distribution centre in Belgium. Pictured: Daniel Zhang, CEO of Alibaba Group, announces the firm sold RMB213.5bn (nearly $31bn) in merchandise during Singles’ Day sales on 11 November 2018. Photo credit: Alibaba Group
Alibaba’s logistics unit, Cainiao, will open its first European hub in Liège, a Belgian newspaper reported on 13 November.
“We’ve already started” the development process, Terry von Bibra, the Chinese e-commerce giant’s European general manager, told L’Echo.
Alibaba has partnered with Liège officials to find a suitable 380,000 square metre site, he said. Von Bibra declined to state when ground would be broken on the project. The company has already run initial flights between Hangzhou, the Chinese city where Alibabi is headquartered, and Liège.
Liège joins international Alibaba distribution centres in Dubai, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur and Moscow. The Belgian city, about 160km northwest of Luxembourg City, beat out Maastricht in the Netherlands to host the facility, according to L’Echo.
Von Bibra stated that Alibaba would consider creating a second or third hub in Europe in the coming years, based on the company’s performance.
Separately, Alibaba said it shifted $30.8 billion in merchandise on Sunday, “Singles’ Day”, a major shopping day in China and elsewhere. That was a 27% increase over the same day in 2017.