China's Taobao.com Deploys Offline Stores

Taobao.com, the Internet shopping subsidiary of the Chinese B2B e-commerce group Alibaba, has announced that it has started to deploy offline authorized stores to provide convenience to consumers who do not wish to shop online.

The first batch of 150 offline authorized stores of Taobao.com has been put into operation in Hangzhou, Zhejiang. The Internet retail platform says it plans to deploy over 30,000 such stores in communities and schools across China before the end of 2010.

By paying a small service fee, consumers can ask these authorized stores to help them buy various products from Taobao.com and they can pay for these purchases in cash.

In addition, consumers will be free from concerns about fraud that are common when Internet shopping since, in the event of a problem with the purchase Taobao.com will compensate the customer directly.

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