Chinese ecommerce company Alibaba Group announced Wednesday it would be teaming up with U.S. membership only marketplace, ShopRunner. This partnership will allow ShopRunner to sell and ship American goods to China, according to an article in Forbes.
Fiona Dias, chief strategy officer for ShopRunner, told Forbes the partnership will launch at the end of the year, making it easier for consumers in China to buy American brands.
“There’s a pent-up demand for U.S. goods in China,” Dias told Forbes. “Alibaba has this vision that we totally subscribe to in moving to a frictionless global model where consumers can buy from anywhere.”
ShopRunner partners with brands, brick-and-mortar retailers and other vendors to offer ecommerce services. The company offers two-day shipping and free returns to buyers.
To be part of ShopRunner, members pay $79 a year, which allows consumers to shop online at over 100 retailers, according to Forbes. Alibaba currently owns 39% of ShopRunner after it made a $202 million investment in October 2013.
According to Forbes, ShopRunner will allow a select group of Alibaba customers to receive memberships so they can browse and shop various American websites of retailers that are affiliated with ShopRunner.
Once a product has been purchased by a Chinese consumer, it will be shipped to a central U.S. location –free of charge – and then it is taken overseas by Alibaba with consumers paying for the cross-border delivery fees, according to Forbes. Once the product arrives in China, Alibaba’s logistics services will bring the product to the consumer’s door.