Mergers & Acquisitions in The Korean E-Commerce Market: Opportunities for Foreign Niche E-Commerce Sites

First-generation Korean e-commerce enterprises are currently working to integrate recently acquired businesses and create new business prospects in the fiercely competitive E-commerce market of Korea.

Korean-ecommerce mergers
Korean E-Commerce Market

Last month, Korea Center, the owner of, the nation’s oldest online shopping mall and Danawa, another local e-commerce business, merged. In order to increase their ability to compete in the market, the two businesses intend to operate their e-commerce platforms independently while eventually building an integrated system for
the analysis of online shopping data. The merger was, obviously, because of increased competition in the Korean market.

IPG Legal is known for assisting e-commerce companies and startups in mergers & acquisition deals and related legal and business services in Korea and globally. For an article on joint venture mergers in Korea please see: Korean Joint Venture Due Diligence and Korean M & A Due Diligence Checklist.

Recently, Ku Young-bae, the founder of Gmarket, and eBay acquired TMON to add it to their Southeast Asian e-commerce platform Qoo10. Through its logistics division Qxpress, Qoo10 owns international distribution facilities in 11 nations. The business committed to working with TMON to offer higher-quality services for international trade.

The retail giant Shinsegae recently unveiled a merged membership club for its two online stores, and Gmarket. Shinsegae is introducing a new overnight delivery service for fresh food as part of its ongoing expansion of its online retail company. Merger activity is alive in Korea and opportunities abound for smaller players, niche players and those interested in capitalizing on the dynamic Korean market.

“The merger and acquisition activity of first-generation e-commerce firms demonstrates the faster than ever anticipated trend change in the local online retail market. Their ability to survive in the face of fierce competition from established competitors that have already taken over the local market would depend on their unique business ideas” – An e-commerce firm official reported.

The e-commerce trend is a massive opportunity to expand businesses to the next level of success in the local Korean online and service delivery market. IPG Legal has assisted many local and foreign businesses to smoothly pivot in the Korean market.

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