‘Alibaba’s $3.6bn splurge cements value of stores in retail’s future’

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Alibaba, one of the world’s largest ecommerce players, this week splashed $3.6bn on its latest big-money acquisition.

Its target? Not a fast-growing online business. Not a rival marketplace operator. Not an up and coming direct-to-consumer brand. Not even a heavyweight technology or fulfilment specialist. Its target was a bricks-and-mortar retailer.

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