AliExpress Russia, a leading cross-border and domestic e-commerce platform in Russia, has invested in a major regional e-commerce company, KazanExpress, acquiring a 30% stake, reports East-West Digital News (EWDN).
The value of the transaction was not disclosed, but in a media interview company co-owner Linar Khusnullin mentioned a sum of “several billions of rubles” (dozens of millions of US dollars). Founded in 2017 and based in Tatarstan, KazanExpress combines marketplace and retail models – working with some 5,000 registered Russian merchants (as of early March), essentially from Russia’s regions. The company is currently investing in logistics to expand its 24-hour delivery. It aims to reach to 72% of the country’s online consumers by covering 127 cities in the European part of Russia.
“Perfectly built logistics is our key feature, with free, next-day delivery in covered city,” Khusnullin said, noting that consumers are not only sensitive to price and assortment.
In February 2021, KazanExpress generated just 2mn visits, according to SimilarWeb – a model record in comparison with Wildberries (155mn), AliExpress Russia (93mn) or Ozon (79mn). However, the company is growing extremely fast: its traffic doubled from September 2020 and the number of parcels (currently 1mn monthly) increased eight-fold in a year.
Thus KazanExpress expects an eight-fold increase in its turnover this year (from RUB1.3bn in 2020, or $180,000 at the average exchange rate of the year).
“As a leading Russian e-commerce player, we develop the company in different directions and always look at bright startup,” commented AliExpress Russia CEO Dmitry Sergeev.
This article first appeared in East-West Digital News, a partner of bne IntelliNews