TikTok owner ByteDance is planning to launch an international ecommerce platform next month in a major challenge to China’s retail giants.
According to The Passage, ByteDance is planning to unveil a cross-border business-to-consumer ecommerce platform in October, with sources close to the matter stating it will be similar to Alibaba’s AliExpress platform.
While it is understood that the developers had considered integrating the platform into TikTok, which is also currently expanding its retail functionality, the new platform will be entirely separate from the social media behemoth.
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The project will put ByteDance in direct competition with leading platforms like Alibaba, JD.com and Pinduoduo, all of which have been subject to strict crackdowns by the Chinese government over the past year.
TikTok’s has also been making major strides into the world of ecommerce, announcing last month that all UK Shopify sellers will now be able to list their goods through the social media app.
According to research conducted by TikTok, 54 per cent of younger shoppers now discover brands through social media.
Its latest addition will allow sellers in the UK and US, where TikTok is trialling its shopping platform, to add a shopping tab to their TikTok profiles by syncing their product catalogues to create a ‘mini-storefront’.