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Amazon's Chinese competitor heads overseas... with bad English

German e-commerce company Lazada brings Chinese online shopping platform Taobao to Singapore -- with content translated using Alibaba.

Alibaba Group

Amazon's Chinese competitor Taobao is taking its first steps to reach out to the English speaking market. It launched its partnership with German e-commerce firm Lazada in Singapore, featuring products with badly translated English.

This is not the first attempt by Alibaba, the parent company of Taobao, to move to international markets, but previous attempts had no other language option than Chinese.

The all-English platform aims to ease the shopping process for Singapore shoppers, says Lazada, with more than 70 percent of the population in Singapore speaking English. The content, originally in Chinese on Taobao, will be translated using Alibaba's translation tool, of course. Here's an example:

translated-content.jpg
Screenshot by Zoey Chong/CNET

The new site will add 400,000 selected products retailing on Taobao to Lazada's 5 million. International standard delivery will take two to three weeks, according to the website.

The move is seen as part of Alibaba's efforts to expand internationally, and comes amid expectations of Amazon's entry into the region this year -- with content in native English.

Neither Lazada nor Alibaba responded to questions about which markets the website will cater to in addition to Singapore.

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