Shenzhen-based internet company Tencent (0700.HK) will merge its QQ Buy and QQ Mall e-commerce sites into a single platform under the QQ Buy brand on March 26, a Tencent spokesperson said yesterday. Offerings from both platforms will continue to be available at http://buy.qq.com.
According to the Tencent spokesperson, the all-new QQ Buy will emphasize "quality and fun." Upgrades to the platform will raise the barrier to entry for merchants in order to greatly streamline the existing stable of QQ Buy and QQ Mall merchants. Roughly the top 30% of existing merchants will be retained.
According to a source in Tencent's e-commerce division, the company will connect the backends of its two B2C platforms, QQ Buy and 51Buy, during the latter half of 2013. Once the platforms are connected, an initial batch of roughly 100,000 products will become available for delivery through 51Buy's self-developed logistics service. By the end of July 2013, Tencent will have implemented seamless interconnectivity between QQ Buy and 51Buy product orders, customer accounts, and payment systems.