China’s largest online retailers expect sales to as much as triple next year, setting off a rush for warehouse space that’s pushing up rents in the world’s fastest-growing major economy.
“Everyone wants more warehouses,” Ji Wenhong, chief executive officer of luxury goods seller xiu.com, said in an interview. “Any warehouse bigger than 20,000 square meters will be leased the second it’s out on the market.”
Wal-Mart Stores Inc.-backed Yihaodian is looking for more space in anticipation of need. 360buy.com, China’s second largest e-commerce company by sales, plans to invest as much as 6 billion yuan ($943 million) over the next three years to build seven distribution centers as the Beijing-based company expects 2011 sales to triple from last year to 30 billion yuan.