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FOOD SERVICES | Staff Reporter, China
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Alibaba acquires Chinese delivery startup Ele.me in $9.5b deal

It plans to expand in China’s fast-growing market for local delivery of food and other services.

According to Fortune, the deal implies an enterprise valuation of $9.5 billion for Ele.me and Alibaba has acquired all the shares formerly held by Baidu. The Ele.me deal is part of a broader foray by China’s largest e-commerce company into logistics and brick-and-mortar assets. Alibaba is taking over longtime delivery affiliate Cainiao and putting money into warehouses. It has also made investments in traditional retailers, including department store chain Intime Retail Group and China’s largest operator of Walmart-style hypermarkets.

Baidu had ceded control of its own food-delivery unit to Ele.me last year as the startup and Meituan became the two biggest competitors in China’s online food-delivery market.

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