The Melbourne office of Chinese e-commerce giant JD.com quietly closed last week after less than 15 months of operation. Patrick Nestel, the head of Australia and New Zealand, has left. Jingdong founder Liu Qiangdong's southern hemisphere expansion plan may be in trouble.

01

The person in charge of the closure of JD Oceania headquarters resigns

In February 2018, JD.com announced its entry into the Australian and New Zealand markets. Thanks to the support of the Victorian government, JD.com established Oceania’s regional headquarters in Melbourne’s famous financial street Collins Street.

JD.com plans to provide retail services to users in Australia and New Zealand through an exclusive partnership with Tencent. With more than 2.66 million active users, JD.com is considered by the Victorian government to be an important channel for local companies to enter the Chinese market.

Last year, Liu Qiangdong, Chairman and CEO of JD.com said:

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Customers in Australia and New Zealand have a great demand for high-quality products. Our move to enter Australia is an important step to meet this demand.

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However, entering the Australian marketLess than 15 months, Jingdong withdrew from the Australian market, the office ceased operations, and Patrick Nestel, the person in charge of Australia and New Zealand, has also resigned.

02

The spokesperson responded: normal adjustment

Jingdong responded to this withdrawal from the Australia and New Zealand market: "JingdongThe Australian office was set up to make it easier to attract Australian brands into the country. After several years of hard work, most of the Australian premium brands have already started business on the JD platform.

The resident agency has completed its historical mission. The follow-up brand-related docking and services will be integrated and managed by the domestic team. This is a normal adjustment. "

A JD spokesperson said that the Australian office will be integrated into the Chinese business, and Australian exporters will be connected and managed by JD’s existing domestic team.

The importance of Australia will not change, nor will the partnership between JD.com and exporters in Australia and New Zealand.

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We continue to establish strong partnerships with various brands, including wine, health products, babies and pregnant women, food and beverages, and cosmetics companies.

"

03

Is Chinese e-commerce unacceptable in Australia?

When JD.com first entered the Australian market, local retailers had expressed worries that the arrival of Chinese e-commerce would have an impact on the Australian retail market.

Patrick Nestel, head of Australia and New Zealand, said in an interview last year: "We are optimistic that we can create new revenue sources in Australia in the next twelve months."

Jingdong’s first quarter revenue was$ 178 billion.

In fact, the entry of foreign e-commerce giants such as Amazon, Alibaba and JD.com did not pose a threat to local Australian retailers as previously expected, but rather showed signs of "unacceptable".

Mark Tanner, managing director of China Skinny, a Shanghai marketing company, said,

JD.com is currently going through a very challenging period. Their business growth has slowed down and their profits are under pressure.

04

Does sex scandal affect reputation?

Although JD.com responded that the closure of the Melbourne office is a normal adjustment of its operating strategy, everyone will still think whether it is affected by Liu Qiangdong's "personal problems".

Event review:

August 8: Liu Qiangdong arrived in Minneapolis to participate in the doctoral program.
August 8: In the evening, Liu Qiangdong and his party dine at the local Origami Uptown restaurant. The female student involved in the case attended the dinner.

August 8: At 31 o'clock that night, the victim called the police. Liu Qiangdong was arrested around 9 o'clock.

September 9: Liu Qiangdong was released by the police.

September 9: Liu Qiangdong leaves the country. A JD spokesperson posted on Weibo that Liu Qiangdong had been "falsely accused" and "no wrongdoing was found" after the police investigation.

September 9: The Ming State Police Department in the United States disclosed some details of Liu Qiangdong's sexual assault case in the United States.

December 12: The Mingzhou prosecutor announced that Liu Qiangdong would not be prosecuted, which means that Liu Qiangdong does not have to bear formal responsibility for the case

In about 4 months, news related to the incident frequently made headlines in Australia, and the domestic popularity was also high, almost contracting hot searches.

I thought the matter was over, and the turmoil resumed four months later.

On April 2019, 4, the female protagonist of the Mingzhou case filed a civil lawsuit against Jingdong and Liu Qiangdong, claiming that she was "arranged", was poured alcohol during the dinner, was molested in the car, and was later followed back. Home, she resisted the whole process to no avail.

On April 4, surveillance video suddenly flowed out of the network, and the two sides launched a 22-hour fierce video war, frequently throwing out various fierce materials.

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Round1: The video of Liu Qiangdong's dinner party was exposed. The woman did not take the initiative to follow him while drunk, and the two people did not always sit together at the dinner party.

Round2: The heroine sent a video to fight back. The previous video was misleading the public. Liu Qiangdong took the initiative to talk to the girl. During the banquet, other people asked the girl to sit next to Liu Qiangdong.

Round3: The Associated Press played, and both sides played XNUMX rebounds: the girl took the initiative to invite Liu Qiangdong into the apartment, Liu Qiangdong toasted, put on a coat, and pulled his arms.

Round4: The woman released a video of Liu Qiangdong's arrest, wearing slippers behind her hands.

Round5: Liu Qiangdong asked the woman for money to record.

Round6: The woman released a complete audio recording and responded that it was not the police who offered financial compensation.

Round7: The girl was persuaded to drink 19 times during the dinner. Liu Qiangdong chatted with her face to face many times. The video that the man broke was edited.

After this incident, Liu Qiangdong took a real "marital derailment", not only the image plummeted, but the stock price and value also fell along with it. In only 20 days, causedUS$70 billion, equivalent to a loss of RMB 478 billion.

I hope Mr. Liu Qiangdong can face up to his mistakes and learn from his mistakes, continue to lead Chinese Internet companies to continue their development, and set an example for young Chinese entrepreneurs.