Pinduoduo became the fastest e-commerce company to surpass 700 million active buyers, setting another record as the five-year-old company reported its first quarterly profit since listing.
Pinduoduo served 731.3 million active buyers and generated nearly RMB1.5 trillion in GMV in the 12 months ended September 30. Net income attributable to ordinary shareholders was RMB466.4 million for the quarter ended Sept. 30 on a non-GAAP basis, compared with a net loss of RMB1.66 billion in the same quarter last year.
“This year we continued to deliver strong user growth and build trust and engagement with consumers,” said Chen Lei, Chief Executive Officer of Pinduoduo. “As we look forward to the next phase of our journey, we remain steadfast in our vision of offering consumers a greater selection of value-for-money products through a fun and interactive discovery experience.”
Pinduoduo has made important progress in its “New Brand” initiative, which was first launched at the end of 2018 as part of its “consumer-to-manufacturer” (“C2M”) effort to help merchants and manufacturers gain insight into their target customers.
This quarter, Pinduoduo pledged to provide more support and expand the program’s coverage to 5,000 companies, helping them create 100,000 customized C2M products and drive an aggregate GMV of RMB1 trillion by 2025.
To date, Pinduoduo has worked with more than 1,500 companies and generated more than 460 million cumulative orders in the first phase of the “New Brand” initiative.
Pinduoduo will continue to invest in technology to enable the merchants and manufacturers. The company is also exploring more software services in areas of analysis, prediction, tracking and automation to help merchants streamline their operations.
To extend Pinduoduo’s leadership as China’s largest e-commerce platform for agricultural products, the company introduced a grocery service in August to meet the growing demand for buying groceries online. The feature, called Duo Duo Maicai, is now available in most provinces.
The next-day, self pick-up grocery service is a natural extension of Pinduoduo’s strategy to drive e-commerce penetration in agriculture, and highly complementary to its agricultural business.
By expanding the breadth and scale of the agricultural offerings, Duo Duo Maicai will help further improve the ability of Pinduoduo’s proprietary agriculture data analytics system to predict demand and match it with the most suitable supply.
Pinduoduo has also started exploring various investments in agritech, which can help address challenges in food supply and safety, and labor shortages. The Smart Agriculture Competition, organized by Pinduoduo and China Agricultural University under the guidance of the FAO, is one of the company’s first projects to harness the use of technology to develop commercially viable planting methods that can raise the productivity and economic value of farming.
To ensure that the farmers can benefit fully from the initiatives, Pinduoduo has committed to train another 100,000 New Farmers to help bring rural communities into the digital economy and share in its rewards.
“Our efforts in agriculture and manufacturing sectors seek to create long-term structural changes that would improve our users’ experience and contribute to the value creation of the industries,” said David Liu, Vice President of Strategy at Pinduoduo. “They are not the easiest, but they certainly are the right things to do. We believe that our hard work will pay off in the long run.”