ezbuy dealing with backlog in orders; addresses Alibaba Group's 'scalping' allegations

Online shopping platform ezbuy has been unable to deliver recent orders because of a blockade by Taobao. PHOTO: FACEBOOK/EZBUY SINGAPORE

SINGAPORE - It might be 12.12 soon, but ezbuy.sg is still dealing with a backlog from the 11.11 sale.

The Singapore-based online retail shop has been unable to deliver on past orders due to a blockade from e-commerce giant Taobao.

According to ezbuy, the issue had been ongoing since Nov 4.

The incident has left ezbuy with unfulfilled orders, with many customers still waiting for their purchases.

The site's homepage stated: "Backlog of 11.11 parcels are almost cleared up by now, except a small amount (which) is still not received in warehouse.

"We have shipped out those (which have) arrived first and will keep shipping out the rest once we receive them."

The site's spokesman said: "We are continuously doing all we can to ensure that the inconvenience to customers can be minimised.

"We have recruited additional manpower and additional warehouses to handle the orders and are working round the clock to fulfil the backlogged orders."

The spokesman also said that once the backlogged orders of the previous Taobao "Buy-For-Me" service are fulfilled, all other deliveries and orders for this service will be back to normal.

ezbuy had issued a statement on Friday (Dec 8) saying that more than 300 purchasing accounts, which were used to place orders on popular Chinese e-commerce website Taobao, faced technical restrictions early this month.

ezbuy uses these accounts to place orders on other sites such as Alibaba-owned Taobao on behalf of customers. However, it was unable to place orders and check out successfully since Nov 4.

The incident led to words being exchanged between the founder of ezbuy and Alibaba Group.

On Friday (Dec 8), ezbuy founder He Jian posted an open letter to Mr Ma on Chinese social media platform WeChat, accusing Taobao of bullying a smaller player.

In response, Alibaba Group issued a statement on its Taobao website later on Friday, saying ezbuy's practice of creating accounts to buy items from Taobao and reselling them was an act of scalping, which it does not tolerate and will penalise.

On Monday, ezbuy, in response to queries from The Straits Times regarding the accusation from Alibaba Group, said: "It is inaccurate to label it as scalping as we are simply giving customers a more curated selection of products."

The spokesman said ezbuy adds value by providing a comprehensive shopping experience for each user.

ezbuy said that while Taobao does account for large quantities of its business, and will affect its operations in the short term, the damage will be mitigated by its expansion into other markets.

The spokesman said: "We have marketplaces from South Korea, the US, Taiwan, China and even our local sellers - we are still offering millions of products."

It also does not see any changes being made to its staff count.

On the conflict between ezbuy and Taobao, the spokesman said: "Ideally, we hope that things can be settled amicably and come to a consensus.

"We are definitely open to making changes but ultimately, what we care most about is our customers and how we can continue to better fulfil their needs and demands without any unnecessary service disruptions."

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