By Jon Russell
Daraz was founded in 2012 by Rocket Internet and today it operates in Pakistan as well as Bangladesh, Myanmar, Sri Lanka and Nepal. Rocket said in a statement that Alibaba has acquired the entire Daraz business. The deal is the second time Alibaba has bought a Rocket company, the first being Lazada in Southeast Asia two years ago.
Rumors of a deal have been rife for the past couple of months, with Bloomberg reporting in March that acquisition talks were ongoing.
The deal is part of Alibaba’s second wave of international expansions which see it enter South Asia.
The company initially focused on India — where it has backed Paytm — and Southeast Asia with Lazada, but this year it has spread its wings into lower profile but hugely populous countries in South Asia. Pakistan, for example, has a population of over 190 million. The acquisition of Daraz follows a fintech investment from Alibaba affiliate Ant Financial, which runs Alipay and other Alibaba financial services.
Source: Tech Crunch