Scoop: TikTok chases Amazon with plans for U.S. fulfillment centers – Axios

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios
TikTok is planning to build its own product fulfillment centers in the U.S., creating an e-commerce supply chain system that could directly challenge Amazon, as indicated by more than a dozen new job openings posted in the past two weeks to LinkedIn.
Why it matters: The move signifies TikTok's commitment to e-commerce as its next major revenue stream, following the explosive growth of its ads business.
Details: According to the job postings, TikTok is looking to build an "international e-commerce fulfillment system" that will include international warehousing, customs clearings and supply chain systems that support domestic e-commerce efforts in the U.S. and cross-border e-commerce efforts. The systems will eventually perform parcel consolidation, along with transporting goods from one stage to the next and managing free returns.
Between the lines: For now, it does not appear that TikTok plans to build out its own transportation unit like Amazon. The job postings imply that TikTok would work with vendors to handle shipping, parcel consolidation and transportation.
State of play: Building out its own e-commerce supply chain could give TikTok more control and boost profits in the U.S. and around the world.
What they're saying: A TikTok spokesperson confirmed that in areas like the U.K. and Southeast Asia where TikTok now offers e-commerce programs, it aims to provide "a selection of merchants which offer a range of product options as well as delivery options."
The big picture: TikTok's meteoric growth, which has already taken its toll on Meta's Facebook and Instagram, has also begun to pose a threat to companies like Amazon and Google that rely on intent-based search advertising to drive business on their shopping platforms.


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