Tencent is entering O2O coffee market to take Starbucks off its comfort zone !
Tencent has signed a strategic partnership agreement with local Chinee chain Luckin Coffee and the tie-up will explore robotic delivery of orders as well as payments using facial recognition. Tencent`s WeChat payment system will be used at Luckin stores and orders online and traffic targeted to the right users.
Luckin and Tencent said they would collaborate in building “smart cafés” and use artificial intelligence applications to facilitate Luckin’s operations.
Funny is that announcement comes a month after the Starbucks-Alibaba alliance to “transform the coffee experience in China.”
As new comer to China’s coffee market, Luckin launched in May 2017 has since opened 1,003 stores in 13 cities, and sold over 26 million cups of coffee. It recently accused Starbucks of trying to monopolize the China market by forcing suppliers to choose between the two chains.
Coffee market is now also a battlefield for China tech giants! What’s next ?!