Cainiao Enhances Cross-Border Logistics Efficiency in APAC

By Elise Leise
The Cainiao Network will use new distribution centres to support SMEs and online merchants—essentially supercharging cross-border transport

In APAC, the Cainiao Network—the logistics arm of Alibaba—has enhanced Lazada’s cross-border logistics efficiency by 50%. Now, customers in Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, and the Philippines will receive shipments as quickly as three days after they place an order on Lazada’s e-commerce platform. ‘Today, consumers have greater expectations when it comes to logistics efficiency, especially for trendy products popularised by social media and influencers’, says Shawn Louis, Executive General Manager for Cainiao and Chief LazGlobal Logistics Officer

What’s the Plan? 

To start, Cainiao has launched distribution centres in China’s export-focused cities of Yiwu, Shenzhen, and Quanzhou, offering doorstep pickup, distribution, and cross-border shipping services. (All shipments will be synced in real-time through its parcel tracking system.) This means that merchants will no longer have to drive their goods to warehouses and wait as they’re queued and scanned. This helps them fulfill orders more quickly—up to 10 hours faster—and save up to three days during peak shopping seasons. 

In addition, Cainiao has set up logistics facilities in 20 cities to consolidate parcels and support local export SMEs. The network is already known for carrying out Alibaba’s mission to make it easy to conduct international trade, delivering anywhere in China within 24 hours and across the world in 72. Now, smaller companies can drop their goods at a Cainiao logistics facility, which will then transport their goods to a major distribution hub. 

Finally, back in March 2021, Cainiao partnered with Hong Kong Air Cargo to launch flights to Southeast Asia. The new logistics routes have shaved off delivery time to the Philippines, Malaysia, and Thailand by a respective 60%, 28%, and 42%. This adds up to the big picture: the Cainiao Network is making it easier for Southeast Asian nations to trade with mainland China. 

Why Does It Matter? 

‘We believe that a comprehensive logistics network is key to facilitating global trade’, Shawn explains. If Lazada supercharges its cross-border trade, it’ll affect all of APAC. As the leading e-commerce platform in Southeast Asia, the Cainiao Network accelerates trade throughout Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam. And if it meets its targets, it’s set to serve 300 million shoppers by 2030 with regional logistics, retail technology, and payments networks. 

Shawn adds: ‘[Our new logistics facilities] will allow online merchants to tap into a booming Southeast Asian market’. When it comes to the Sino-American trade war, then, it seems like China may not need American buyers. The region has plenty—thanks to Alibaba and the Cainiao Network.

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