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We should all be paying more attention to the PDD-Alibaba rivalry

Clothing retailer Shein’s filing confidentially for a U.S. IPO has brought low-cost retailers from the People’s Republic of China to the forefront of both consumers and regulators’ minds. And Temu, another China-based discount retailer that’s often mentioned in the same breath as Shein, is looking particularly interesting today.


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Why? The company is expected to report revenue of more than $16 billion this year, according to Reuters — a simply massive figure. What’s more, its parent company, Chinese e-commerce giant Pinduoduo (PDD), recently overtook Alibaba in market value, dethroning a company that has long been considered to be one of China’s leading business lights. Temu is growing quickly, and is spurring a reshuffling of the pecking order in Chinese tech along the way.

For a bit of context: Both Shein and Temu are trying to look more like they’re international businesses than Chinese companies. Shein has moved its headquarters to Singapore, and Temu was actually founded in Boston, Massachusetts.

The Shein IPO is the obvious leading story, given its imminence, but Temu is worth a second look at the moment, so we’re going to do just that today. To work!

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