In a form filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Bentonville, Ark.-based company said it owns 265 million shares, or more than 9 per cent of shares outstanding in JD, up from the 5 per cent stake it obtained after selling its Yihaodian online marketplace to JD in June.
JD.com is a main competitor of Alibaba. JD.com also has a strategic alliance with Chinese messaging giant Tencent, which owns a strategic stake in JD. Tencent is Alibaba’s archrival, with nearly equal market caps: Tencent is worth US$263 billion vs. Alibaba’s US$267 billion.
WalMart has been putting more effort into its e-commerce efforts after Walmart.com has greatly lagged the growth of Amazon. WalMart recently bought Jet.com, a start-up rival to Amazon, for US$ 3.3 billion.