(Yicai Global) April 13 -- Leading Chinese tech firm Tencent Holdings Ltd. and state-owned conglomerate China Resources Holding Co. have teamed up to cooperate across a range of sectors, including smart retail, as they look to integrate the online and real economies.
The two inked a deal in Chongqing yesterday to work on big data, smart retail, property management and healthcare, state-owned newspaper People’s Daily reported. The partnership unites China’s most valuable tech company with a multi-sector powerhouse that runs 11 companies listed in Mainland China and Hong Kong.
One of the key components of the agreement is a plan for Tencent to fully digitize China Resources’ CR Vanguard, the largest retail supermarket chain in the country. The amalgamation of brick-and-mortar stores and the online economy has become a raging trend in China, where residents are widely open to new technologies. Jack Ma, founder and executive chairman of the country’s biggest e-commerce firm Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., pioneered the concept, which he dubs New Retail.
The pair will also unite to construct smart malls, combining Tencent’s penchant for technology and China Resources’ real estate expertise. The shopping centers will incorporate the Internet of Things, big data and artificial intelligence to create a self-developing urban complex.
Tencent will also work with China Resources Healthcare Group Ltd. and China Resources Pharmaceutical Group Ltd. to introduce digital services for patients, such as online appointment booking, data analysis, payments, expenses reimbursement and digital invoices.
Copy-edited by James Boynton