American League, Ali, Huashan.


American League, Ali, Huashan.

Source: First Financial Weekly

This article is an excerpt. The whole text is about ten thousand words.

Alibaba's tenth pair of 11, no surprise to set a new record in trading volume, hungry, but in another foreign preparedness mentality, spent its first pair of 11 in Alibaba-

A month ago, on October 12, Alibaba CEO Zhang Yong issued an internal letter to employees announcing the merger of Alibaba Group's two major businesses of hungry Mohe and word of mouth, formally establishing Alibaba Local Living Service Company. In addition to the current takeout business, the company will also open up more diversified distribution scenarios in the future, such as Shangchao, pharmacies and even Tianmao, besides catering.

Eighteen days later, through an internal letter, the company announced its first organizational restructuring after its listing. The company will strategically focus on Food + Platform, and take "eating" as the core, set up a user platform, as well as two major business groups, i.e. store and home. The so-called "home" means "delivering everything".

The two companies have advocated almost the same strategic direction at the same time. This new direction is called "local life". The first dish is take-out. It was started by hungry or hungry, and later by the American League, Alibaba joined the restaurant by buying hungry or hungry.

Takeaway itself is not a big business, but its "local life" is a huge market. When Shangchao, drugstores, clothing stores and other physical retail stores join this "instant distribution" network, which is shaped by takeout, it almost means the beginning of the second half of the Internet economy. Whether we can eat the main course of this big meal will depend on the double struggle between the two companies in terms of industrial digitalization and category expansion.

An unnamed front-line employee told First Financial Weekly that he had joined the company for four years and changed three or four different lines of business. He and his colleagues had already expected that there would be a "war" between the company and Alibaba.

From the end of October to the beginning of November, in an interview with Wang Huiwen, the co-founder of the group, senior vice president, and Wang Lei, president of Ali Local Living Service Company, both sides declared that they were ready for a protracted war.

Historically, two companies have had a very shallow fate. The company has gone through a long process of "Alibaba" and thinks it knows Alibaba's corporate culture, values and ways of doing things. But to compete with Alibaba, a smaller version of Alibaba is definitely not a reliable solution.

In the outside world, Alibaba of the two companies is good at formulating strategies, and Metro is good at "coming first". If further explained, the company is more willing to follow the trend and benefit from it, while Alibaba is more like a trend maker who likes to throw out new concepts and point out new directions to the industry. The battle of the US group Ali is also a competition between the two kinds of thinking modes of Internet companies.

As far as takeaway market is concerned, the US group is the leader in the market share. But when it comes to the future, as this battle continues to penetrate into more local life scenarios and into the level of to B business, the capabilities and resource reserves of MIT and Alibaba need to be recalculated.

In the past, from the O2 O group buying war to the liquor brigade war to the takeout war, the American Corps has been trying to avoid a money-burning war with its rivals, believing that all user experiences need to be discussed in a "reasonable cost structure". For example, in the management of Moby's bicycle, it has almost stopped putting new cars into the market at present, and has also reduced its investment in repairing damaged vehicles, as long as it is "better" than its rival ofo.

The problem is that if Alibaba is such a powerful opponent, it will be very difficult for the American Corps not to be forced to make adaptable changes if it burns money to keep up the competitive atmosphere.

Poking pictures to see how the American regiment Ali talked about "local life".

The first round of the US delegation's careful study before takeoff and takeaway

In early 2013, the US group began to explore whether to enter the takeaway business. At that time, the "1000 Regiments War" was over. With its keen sense of mobile internet, the Regiment won the first opportunity in the traffic of group buying business on the App side with far less marketing investment than its rivals. It began to look forward to new market opportunities beyond group buying.

Compared with the mature traffic volume of group buying, takeaway was still a niche consumer behavior. First do market research, form their own understanding of the market, and then ponder the way the existing players play, from their "fatal mistakes" to find their own opportunities - this is the first step for the United States Troupe to enter a new field.

In view of the takeaway business, the US Corps sent two research teams. One of them is to study data from the United States. The main object of observation is the takeaway Unicorn Grub Hub, which was founded as early as 2003. The other one is responsible for the domestic survey. The subjects of the survey are mainly the two "head players" in the market - the gourmet party at home and hungry?

One of the first questions the company wants to answer is: How big is the takeout market in China?

At that time, represented by the family food fair, the basis for judging the market came from GrubHub. After 10 years of GrubHub, there were only about one hundred thousand orders per day in 2013. With the establishment of less than 4 years, the number of daily orders has reached 20 thousand. Close to the GrubHub growth progress of the food fair, think that the pace of business growth is in line with expectations. But the premise of this expectation is actually based on the judgment that the takeout volume in the Chinese market may be similar to that in the United States.

But the market research team of the US group has doubts about this. "Ten years of operation has only reached the order volume level of more than 100,000," takeout business from this scale is not really "sexy" in anticipation. However, another product manager, who was responsible for investigating the domestic market, returned to the company and brought back a data that shone the eyes of corporate executives --- takeout growth at home was much faster than in the United States.

To a certain extent, growth reflects market size. According to this logic, the US group analyzed the order quantity data on the hungry platform. First of all, the data of Shanghai Jiaotong University's order that was the best in the school market at that time. Using the relationship between the number of students in Shanghai Jiaotong University campus and the order quantity, the American Troupe calculated the order quantity of college students in China and the market. The conclusion is that the order quantity is about 1.5 million to 2 million.

From this point of departure, a more prudent market research around takeout business continued into the second half of 2013. The group put together several parts of the market --- campus market, company market, community market --- the observed user behavior, including population and cost, and finally estimated the volume of Chinese takeout market, which should be 10 million units per day.

Although the actual size of China's takeout industry today has reached the level of 340 million daily orders, five years ago the American Mission said that the forecast of "10 million daily orders" is still quite bold. Because this figure is almost 100 times the volume of business at that time GrubHub days.

After the prediction of market size, the US group began to analyze its opponents.

Sun Hao, the owner of the Home-to-Home Food Club founded in 2010, was a former executive of Lihua Fast Food. Unlike the latter, Home-to-Home Food Club moved the menu of the restaurant online. In 2008, several Shanghai Jiaotong University graduates, including Zhang Xuhao, started takeout business on campus.

"They are all top entrepreneurs." Wang Huiwen said that before the formal decision to enter the takeout field, the delegation had run to talk with the hungry founders Zhang Xuhao and Kang Jia, and once thought, "If you don't win, you may vote directly."

But there are only two answers to why there are so many divergences in judging the size of the market: either the company's estimates are wrong or previous players have failed to make a thorough analysis of the market.

Did the Delegation further study hunger with questions? From grabbing the order information on the website and sorting the order quantity of 12 cities that were hungry at that time, they were shocked to find that Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou and Hangzhou ranked the top four respectively. Fuzhou is the fifth place in the state.

The founding team of the American League has worked together on Intranet and meal - two online social products. They are very familiar with the regional distribution characteristics of the "college market" which was the first to break into when they were hungry. In addition, it has accumulated a lot of experience in the group buying war, and is familiar with the maturity ranking of Chinese cities'consumption power. In these past experiences, "Fuzhou ranks around 30."

From this, the American Mission deduced another key conclusion: "At least 25 cities are not doing well when they are hungry." According to the calculation of hungry people in only 12 cities at that time, it has at least 18 empty cities which should be settled but not settled. This is the opportunity for the US mission.

The question is, why are competitors not doing well in those markets that should be done well? For example, Wuhan, the country's most intensive university with 1 million college students, has been hungry for nearly four years in takeout business. Why has it not been stationed late?

Hungry founder Zhang Xuhao and Kangjia studied Wuhan in person. They went to the school gate at lunchtime to count the number of takeout cars in and out. If there were more takeout cars, they would drive them, but they would not drive as few as possible. As a result, there were no takeout cars in Wuhan universities at that time.

After hearing the news, the delegation suddenly realized that when it was hungry, the takeout business was essentially an online upgrade of the existing takeout business, providing a tool for restaurants that already had takeout business to help consumers to order meals remotely. To get hungry, we got the first batch of users. This idea did help it get through the cold start period of entrepreneurship faster, but after that, hungry did not go beyond this stage in time.

Is the definition of takeout more hungry than hungry? It argues that we should persuade those restaurants that do not take-out and those who do not eat takeout to join us. The more restaurants there are, the more users there are, and the more restaurants there are, in turn, the more businesses will be able to recycle.

"A lot of businesses are in the initial stage of action, contrary to their maturity." Wang Huiwen said. This recognition mainly comes from the US group's research on social media. For example, users today use Wechat mainly to communicate with people they know, but at the beginning, Zhang Xiaolong designed applications such as "nearby people" and "drifting bottles", which are all strangers'social interaction.

The knowledge gained from Wuhan has far-reaching influence on the US mission. They really understood what kind of business takeout was, and found that the formerly powerful rivals actually had cognitive deficits in business. Moreover, it further confirms that its judgment that the takeout market should be larger is correct. If it is hungry, it is likely to estimate only the part of the order that can be "online".

With different perceptions of market size and the blank market left by competitors, in the second half of 2013, just after deciding to enter, the US delegation moved into 30 cities at one time, of which 18 were hungry.


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