CA: Suning, China's Largest Retailer, Opens 1st Silicon Valley R+D Center
22 Nov, 2013
Suning Commerce Group Co., China's largest retailer, announced the opening of its first overseas R&D center in Silicon Valley. Already among China's top three e-commerce destinations, the facility's research will advance Suning's offline-to-online (O2O) business model and bolster its back-office capabilities, which include big data, smart search, high-performance computing, and internet banking.
"China is on pace to become the largest consumer market in the world," said Mr. Zhang Jindong, Chairman of Suning. "Not only will Suning's sustained, long-term investment in innovation and new retail technologies drive aggressive business growth, it will help transform China from the world's factory into the world's market place."
The first in a series of planned R&D centers in cities throughout the U.S., the Silicon Valley facility places Suning in the heart of technological innovation, and will help achieve the core elements of its long-term vision for retail:
- Implementing the large-scale standardization of key retail processes including logistics, information and cash flow
- Eliminating the imbalance of information between the consumer and retailer
- Satisfying the evolving needs of the world's global shoppers via an integrated all-inclusive shopping experience that offers the convenience of online and offline
- Offering better capital solutions for upstream suppliers and better consumer finance experience for clients by employing an online, terminal-to-terminal financial industrial chain for suppliers and consumers
"Investments that integrate Suning's e-commerce platform with its 1,600 brick-and-mortar stores will serve as a key driver of sustainable growth," said Mr. Wang Jingxi, General Manager of Suning's new Silicon Valley center. "The center will be dedicated to facilitating this integration, helping create an even more intelligent and enjoyable shopping experience for consumers."
The center is located on Page Mill Road, Palo Alto, and plans to recruit 50 researchers and staff by the middle of 2014.
About Suning Commerce Group Co., Ltd
Suning is the largest commercial enterprise in China with more than 1,600 chain stores covering over 600 cities in Mainland China, Hong Kong and Japan employing 180,000 people grossing $37.7 billion in sales. Its e-commerce platform, Suning.com, ranks among China's top three B2C companies. Suning strives to become a leading, global retail brand by 2020, with sales of $100 billion and another $100 billion by third-party sellers through Suning.
About the Suning Silicon Valley R&D Center, 1661 Page Mill Road, Palo Alto, CA 94304
Backed by an initial investment of $5 million, Suning's Silicon Valley R&D center will serve as the company's U.S. hub for science and technology. Starting in 2014 with a staff of 50, Suning plans to expand the center to 200 people by 2017.
The establishment of the Silicon Valley R&D Center moves Suning a step toward fulfilling its One Body with Two Wings vision for retail; a vision that includes internet-based retail, seamless integration of an online-to-offline business model (O2O), and an open platform.
"Leveraging the features of China's market and the technology advantages of Silicon Valley, the R&D Center will focus on intelligent search and precise marketing, big data technology, high-performance computing, and internet banking," said Mr. Wang Jingxi, General Manager of the Suning Silicon Valley R&D Center."
The center's objective is to create the new model in global retail business by maximizing Suning's advantages in integrating its online and offline business. This will create an intelligent shopping experience for consumers, anywhere and anytime. The research will improve Suning's capabilities in logistics, finance and IT, delivering end-to-end value to suppliers and partners.
The center will cooperate with medium and small enterprises to study advanced commercial models in the US and identify strategic investment and acquisition opportunities.
"As the location of our first overseas R&D center, Silicon Valley offers the potential to partner with leading businesses, attract high-caliber talent, and advance cooperation between China and US," said Mr. Zhang Jindong, Chairman of Suning.
About Suning Commerce Group Co., Ltd
Founded in Najjing, China in 1990 as an air-conditioner specialty store, Suning is now China's largest commercial enterprise with more than 1,600 chain stores covering more than 600 cities in Mainland China, Hong Kong and Japan. It employs 180,000 people with revenues of $37.7 billion
In 2009 the company launched Suning.com, recognizing that the explosion of Internet access across China was ushering in a new way of doing business. The site now ranks among China's top online marketplaces.
Suning is committed to transforming the retail industry and believes in a business model built on the continued growth of both its physical stores and online presence. The company's cloud-based technology platform helps manufacturers, distributors and retailers offer a seamless and scalable experience to individuals, families and large-scale enterprises spanning logistics, financials and marketing.
China is experiencing a dramatic transformation from the world's factory into the world's marketplace, now ranking as the second largest retail market in the world. In the last five years, the total volume of retail sales of consumer goods in China has increased an average of 16.3 percent annually, reaching $3,444 billion in 2012. It is the first choice for retailers of many US brands, such as Apple, Microsoft, Whirlpool, A.O.Smith, HP, Dell, etc.
Coupled with the fact that multinational companies such as Best Buy and Media Market have withdrawn from China due to the geographic and economic differences among regions and the distinct differences in consumer culture, Suning is positioned to become a leading world-class retail brand. By 2020, Suning aims to become one of the world's leading retailer brands with its own revenue and third-party sales through Suning projected at $100 billion respectively, and overseas sales to reach $10 billion.