COVID-19, e-commerce and the rise of new retail in China
The lockdowns implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic have led to new business trends and consumer habits emerging around the world. With many businesses facing economic hardship, a rapid boost in demand for e-commerce has helped keep companies afloat and national economies moving. With billions confined to their homes, consumers have become increasingly reliant on online shopping, and while this has led to increased demand globally, e-commerce platforms and trends throughout China have also undergone a period of accelerated innovation.
Even before the lockdowns, China’s e-commerce landscape was experiencing radical change, with social buying and live commerce becoming increasingly commonplace. These practices – where buyers can group together to enjoy larger reductions and access limited-time discounts advertised via live-streams respectively – reflect the evolving and expanding services driving a new era of online consumption in China. Despite these changes, however, similar innovation has been slow to take hold in other locked-down countries.
This webinar, organised in partnership with the Chinese tech information platform TechNode, will explore whether the changing retail habits resulting from the current crisis will emerge as the ‘new normal’ after the COVID-19 pandemic, and whether the trends that are reshaping China’s booming e-commerce sector will pave the way for Western and other markets. Finally, as many countries come back online after extended periods of lockdown, this event will assess role of e-commerce and the digital economy in kick-start struggling economies and defining the future of retail.
Gang Lu, Founder and CEO, TechNode
Gang Lu is an internationally-recognised tech expert, who was voted among Shanghai’s Top 1000 Talents and winner of the British Alumni Award – Entrepreneurial Award in China and East Asia region 2017-2018. He started TechNode in 2007 and has since been committed to building the bridge between China and global startup ecosystems.from Tsinghua University.
Jeongmin Seong, Partner, McKinsey Global Institute
Jeongmin leads MGI research teams in China, working on global as well as emerging market-focused themes. His recent research has focused on globalisation, technology, innovation and economic development, and he has co-authored several MGI reports and discussion papers on these topics.
Pocket Sun, Co-Founder and Managing Partner, SoGal
Pocket Sun is an investor, entrepreneur, and sought-after thought leader with global experience. Her life mission is to influence a generation of women to live on their own terms, and she believes the biggest opportunity of the century is the rise of women and minorities worldwide. Pocket Sun founded SoGal in the US while at graduate school, and grew it into two thriving entities – SoGal Ventures and SoGal Foundation. SoGal Ventures is the first female-led, next-gen venture capital firm that invests in early stage startups led by diverse entrepreneurs.
Andre Zhu, Senior Vice President of Strategy and Legal, Pinduoduo Inc
Andre heads the legal team of Pinduoduo and oversees domestic and international litigation and transactional matters of the company. Prior to joining Pinduoduo, Andre was corporate partner at White & Case LLP and counsel at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, LLP. He obtained his Juris Doctor degree from University of California, Hastings College of the Law, master’s degree from University of Minnesota and bachelor’s degree from Tsinghua University.