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Alibaba is in talks to acquire the 60% stake it does not already own in Chinese food ordering and delivery platform Ele.me, according to the FT. The deal could value Ele.me at upwards of $9.5 billion, while sellers would include Baidu, Horizon Ventures and Sequoia Capital China.
Why it matters: Because this would provide Alibaba with its first in-house delivery workers and logistics network, things that global rival Amazon already has and is learning from.
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Should the deal go through, Alibaba would become one of the country’s largest players in food delivery, rivaled only by online-to-offline services platform Meituan Dianping, which is backed by Alibaba’s competitor, Tencent. China’s food delivery market was valued at $32.5 billion in 2017, according to the China Cuisine Association, an industry group.