Temu, the new Chinese e-commerce site that is a hit and worries

Temu, the new Chinese e-commerce site that is a hit and worries

2023-06-05 12:08:30

If you often play on your phone, you must have seen the advertisements for this site flooding the market. Magic hair elastics, storage boxes for your fridge, a revolutionary strainer to rinse and drain your fruits and vegetables… All of this can be found on Temu, the latest trendy Chinese e-commerce site, behind the myriad from already famous platforms like Wish or AliExpress.

Behind this new e-commerce giant, hides a site managed in China and registered in Ireland and the Cayman Islands on behalf of the company PDD Holdings, valued at 92 billion dollars on the stock market and also owner of Pinduoduo, an e-commerce site. – Very popular trade in China.

From AppStore to SuperBowl in just six months

Launched in September in the United States, the Temu application quickly established itself as one of the market leaders. On sale, clothing and jewelry, but also storage accessories, kitchen equipment or even musical instruments. As pointed out by Time, the question is rather “what does Temu not sell?” on this huge cluster of online commerce.

His creed? “Discounts of up to 90%”, promo codes galore and free products sent to customers if they promote the brand on social media or to their loved ones. And it works: in less than three months, the application is at the top of downloads in the United States.

Riding on its success across the Atlantic, the brand even has the luxury of advertising during the SuperBowl half-time. Spot price: 7 million dollars for 30 seconds, and a catchy slogan, “Shop like a billionaire”. In French, “buy like a billionaire”, thanks to the very advantageous prices of the site, she puts forward.

This was followed by a launch in Canada, Australia and New Zealand, before the application landed in the European Union in March: United Kingdom, Italy, Netherlands, Spain, Germany and… France are the six primary countries concerned. Again, the success is total, Temu is currently at the top of downloads on Android and iOS in France.

Malware and Prohibition in Montana

But the surge of the platform on the European market is not without several criticisms. Behind the slashed prices, several customers have reported cases of undelivered packages, additional costs, XXL delivery times, erroneous orders or even customer service for absent subscribers, notes Time magazine.

Its Chinese equivalent Pinduoduo has also suffered a setback: the platform was removed from Android and iOS app stores in the spring, after versions of the app contained malware. Among Pinduoduo’s requests, access to biometric data, Bluetooth or even information from wi-fi networks, specifies CNBC. What create concern around the reliability and security of user data on the Temu side.

In the US state of Montana, fears have turned into a ban: Republican Governor Greg Gianforte has since May 17 banned the app on all civil servants’ devices, alongside other Chinese apps, such as TikTok or WeChat, but also the Russian Telegram.

This ban should be extended in the coming months to prevent these apps from being downloaded statewide.

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