Pinduoduo has entered a strategic partnership with China Post to improve rural e-commerce, increase agricultural sales from remote areas, and alleviate poverty.
As part of the cooperation, China Post will set up 150 bases within three years to help Pinduoduo improve sourcing of quality agricultural products for its almost 700 million consumers. The two companies signed the agreement in Beijing on Sept. 19 during China Post’s fourth Postal E-commerce Festival.
“The postal service has the most comprehensive network coverage in China, bar none,” said a Pinduoduo spokesman. “With this collaboration, even the most remote areas can tap onto the combined resources of the postal service and China’s largest agricultural e-commerce platform to increase market access for farmers, cut down delivery time, and widen choices for consumers.”
China Post is ranked No. 2 among postal and express delivery companies worldwide in terms of revenue behind Japan Post and ahead of the U.S. Postal Service. Pinduoduo said in August that it would pursue more strategic investments and partnerships to accelerate the digitization of the agriculture supply chain so that it can share the efficiency gains with its users. GMV from agriculture could surpass 1 trillion yuan in five years, the company said.
As the largest agricultural e-commerce platform in China, Pinduoduo can give farmers insights into what to produce and how much to charge. The company can also work with logistics providers such as China Post to streamline the supply chain with real-time data.
Pinduoduo has worked with China Post on pilot projects in Shaanxi and Guangxi in the past and will extend the model to more parts of the country to boost the rural e-commerce ecosystem. With its capillary-like coverage of the country, it is said that no other company has as fine an understanding of local conditions as the postal service.
In 2016, a postal worker serving one of the villages in Shaanxi province had noticed a surplus of persimmons and decided to help the farmers sell their harvest online through Pinduoduo. The villagers managed to sell almost 25,000 kilograms of persimmons in 10 days.
In another example, persistent rain in 2019 had prevented wholesale merchants from buying the sugar cane crop from farmers in Muge Town in the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. The local postal service branch worked with Pinduoduo to sell the excess sugar cane, setting up 14 processing points and enlisting more than 500 villagers daily to help pack the sugar cane for sale at wholesale prices online. Within 10 days, 1 million kilograms of sugar cane were sold, the majority through Pinduoduo.