According to Chinese business data platform Tianyancha, Suning.com and its logistics subsidiary became involved in a bankruptcy review case on November 21, triggering rumors about the e-commerce platform that has been struggling with a persistent debt crisis. This report was later officially denied by the company.
The bankruptcy applicant is Neijiang Jinhua Logistics Co., Ltd., and the cited reason is that Suning.com and its logistics subsidiary have been unable to pay off debts, and they obviously lack solvency.
Suning.com said that the case is a dispute between its logistics subsidiary and Neijiang Jinhua Logistics, and that it does not involve Suning.com itself. As of November 22, after Suning.com paid off the arrears, Neijiang Jinhua Logistics Co., Ltd. applied to the court to withdraw the application.
Various rumors have swirled this year regarding Suning.com’s bankruptcy liquidation and acquisition. On July 6, the firm issued a statement denying any bankruptcy liquidation, claiming that the company was operating normally. On November 9, it once again denied rumors that it was acquired by supply and marketing cooperatives.
Despite these assurances, many merchants and suppliers have taken to online platforms to complain that Suning.com was in arrears with its deposits and payments for goods.
Suning.com was also thrust into the limelight 10 years ago. In 2012, it became locked in a price war with Gome and JD.com. In 2015, Alibaba became its second-largest shareholder with a strategic investment of about 28.3 billion yuan ($3.96 billion). After that, its investment map covered real estate, logistics, sports, e-sports and other industries. However, these intensive investments have become a drag on the platform.
From 2018 to 2021, the asset-liability ratio of Suning.com soared to 55.78%, 63.21%, 63.77% and 89.66% respectively. In 2020, it had to carry out a series of measures at the end of the year, such as transferring shares, changing the use of fundraising to repay debts and supplement working capital, and splitting its businesses for financing.
After Shenzhen International withdrew in July last year, Jiangsu-based funds, Alibaba and Huatai Securities jointly invested in Suning.com. After a series of equity changes, founder Zhang Jindong left the board, and the successor was Huang Mingduan, former chairman of RT-Mart, who served as chairman of Suning.com.
Like other retail enterprises, Suning.com regards the “Double 11 Shopping Festival” as an important period in the fourth quarter of each year. Before the opening of this shopping festival, Suning.com announced that it had reached a strategic cooperation with Meituan, and over 600 of its stores settled in the food delivery platform. In August this year, it also opened its first Yijia store in Nanjing. Suning Yijia is an innovative format focusing on home appliances, home furnishing, and other services under Suning.com.