Chinese Internet giant Tencent is marching into the offline retail market. The company plans to buy a 5% stake in Yonghui Superstores, a domestic department store operator, Caixin reported.
The company will also secure a 15% stake of Yonghui’s supply chain and logistics subsidiary via a capital increase. Yonghui said the investment is still in the preliminary planning stage.
A source in Yonghui’s senior management team said once the deal is settled, Yonghui will introduce WeChat Pay, Tencent’s self-developed online payment method. The superstore will then benefit from the customer traffic generated by WeChat users.
Meanwhile, Tencent has developed a new payment scenario for WeChat Pay to compete with Alipay, Alibaba’s digital wallet.
Earlier last month, Alibaba expanded its investment in brick-and-mortar retail by buying into Sun Art Retail Group, one of China’s major grocery chains.