Cainiao Network, the logistics arm of Alibaba Group, announced a long-term plan to establish its smart warehouse network in Southeast Asia, including Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore. The network comprising Cainiao Hubs, also known as cHubs, will cover a total land area close to 2.5 million square meters.
Equipped with cutting-edge technologies, the cHubs will play an instrumental role in the transformation of the logistics industry in Southeast Asia. The region’s sweeping urbanisation and industrialisation, rapid growth in e-commerce and the rising expectations of a direct-to-consumer model also puts cHubs in a prime position to establish an innovative supply chain infrastructure. The cHubs will also support local B2B and B2C businesses in their local distribution, supply chain and export needs.
“It has always been Alibaba’s core mission to make it easy to do business anywhere. The Southeast Asia smart warehouse network was launched to accomplish exactly that. With this move, Cainiao is solidifying our commitment to help shape the logistics industry in Southeast Asia. We believe this can further bolster cross-border trade and eCommerce growth for this region. Furthermore, strong export markets will be able to benefit from Cainiao’s supply chain management services which will drive export demand, with a peace-of-mind,” said Eric Xu, General Manager of Cainiao Smart Hub.
These cHubs are located near key transportation nodes and manufacturing hubs in the region and are well-positioned to support its recovery, while tapping on the regional ecosystem’s connectivity to global markets to build a resilient supply chain.
Full-chain service includes fulfilment and sorting for local deliveries, import and export for B2B and B2C businesses, smart supply chain management, and smart logistics technology such as IoT, automation and warehouse management system (WMS). As the latest cHubs, new and niche logistics requirements are also factored in, including cold chain management and green logistics.
While the pandemic has sent many businesses into upheaval, it accelerated the boom in e-commerce. E-commerce in Southeast Asia has expanded almost six times between 2016 and 2020 and is set to grow at a rate of 22 percent annually, to US$309 billion by 2025, according to Statista. These cHubs enable e-commerce merchants and local businesses in Southeast Asia to be at the forefront, providing end-to-end and cost-effective logistics services without traditional middle distribution layers.