Alibaba Spends $2.2B, Looks To Connect With Shoppers In Elevators, Too

Adi Arriansyah . July 20, 2018

China’s Alibaba Group has become one of the world’s largest e-commerce companies by promoting online shopping via computer and mobile phone screens. Now, it wants to connect with you through outdoor marketing screens and elevator ads, too.

Alibaba Group will acquire a minority interest in China’s Focus Media Information Technology as it looks to create new models of digital marketing, according to a filing to the New York Stock Exchange today.  Focus Media, one of China's largest advertising media businesses, has a network of digital ad screens on streets, in subways and in elevators across 300 Chinese cities, reaching 200 million consumers. Alibaba also will buy a 10% stake in an entity controlled by Focus Media’s billionaire founder and chairman Jason Jiang, which in turn owns 23.3% of Focus Media, for $504.7 million.  New Retail Strategic Opportunities Fund L.P., a related party of Alibaba, will acquire a 1.37% interest in Focus Media as well.
The total investment will be $2.2 billion, giving Alibaba a 10.3% stake in Focus Media. Focus shares rose by their 10% daily trading limit in China trading today on the news.
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