After more than a decade in service, Amazon announced that it would be closing its e-commerce marketplace in China in April 2019. The company had failed to gain a strong foothold in the world’s second largest economy, losing out to the local-based competitors such as Alibaba.
“We are notifying sellers we will no longer operate a marketplace on Amazon.cn and we will no longer be providing seller services on Amazon.cn effective July 18. We are working closely with our sellers to ensure a smooth transition and to continue to deliver the best customer experience possible”, an Amazon spokesperson told Yahoo Finance in a statement. “Sellers interested in continuing to sell on Amazon outside of China are able to do so through Amazon Global Selling”.
“Amazon was never able to get into marketplace in a strong way”, said Stephen Rector, founder and president of Bakertown Consulting. “Based on the dominance that they have in other parts of the globe, it’s almost better to walk away from a place where your market share is so low”.
This news might not come as a surprise to most, due to the ramping-up of the US-China trade war. One would expect any American company to be threatened by this turn of events. Apparently, not Amazon though.
According to data by Thinknium, a company that surfaces alternative data culled from the web, the e-commerce juggernaut has been quietly boosting job postings in the country. Data shows a 475 per cent increase in job postings since January 2018.
Despite dropping their e-commerce services in the country, Amazon will continue to operate its other businesses.
“Amazon’s commitment to China remains strong—we have built a solid foundation here in a number of successful businesses and we will continue to invest and grow in China across Amazon Global Store, Global Selling, AWS, Kindle devices and content”, according to a spokesperson for Amazon.
Since the start of 2018, according to Thinknum data, Amazon was slowly cutting down on the number of customer service and stock management job listings. Then a couple of months later, the company announced on 18 April 2019 that it would be shutting down its China marketplace.
However since then, Amazon has been ratcheting up other jobs listings. There are currently 124 “sales, advertising and account management” positions listed, 69 “solutions architect” positions and 54 “software development” positions.