ArrowArtboardCreated with Sketch.Title ChevronTitle ChevronIcon FacebookIcon LinkedinIcon Mail ContactPath LayerIcon MailPositive ArrowIcon PrintIcon Twitter
Business trends

Asian shoppers turn to online sellers abroad amid pandemic

E-commerce boom powers transshipment and middleman platforms

Workers load goods onto a jet owned by SF Express, one of the largest logistics companies in China. In recent years it has stepped up operations of its transshipment platform, SF Buy.   © Reuters

HONG KONG -- Lucy Wang used to reach out to her surrogate shopper whenever she wanted to buy baby products from overseas. The mother of two in Shanghai would receive the items within days, delivered by hand by her proxy agent, a flight attendant who runs a side business helping local customers purchase highly sought-after items abroad.

Personal shoppers, known as daigou -- Chinese for "buying on behalf of" -- have been one of the major channels for Chinese to get their hands on products unavailable at home, or are cheaper abroad.

Sponsored Content

About Sponsored Content This content was commissioned by Nikkei's Global Business Bureau.

Discover the all new Nikkei Asia app

  • Take your reading anywhere with offline reading functions
  • Never miss a story with breaking news alerts
  • Customize your reading experience

Nikkei Asian Review, now known as Nikkei Asia, will be the voice of the Asian Century.

Celebrate our next chapter
Free access for everyone - Sep. 30

Find out more