Cainiao, the cash-rich parcel tracking platform of Alibaba Group, has acquired a 15% stake in Air China Cargo (CA, Beijing Capital), Chinese financial data sources reveal, giving the latter’s registered capital a boost from CNY7.38 billion yuan (USD1.15 billion) to CNY10.69 billion (USD1.66 billion).

Launched by Alibaba in 2013, Cainiao Smart Logistics Networks is one of the biggest unicorn companies in China, valued in 2018 at CNY100 billion (USD15.5 billion). The company’s registered name, Zhejiang Cainiao Supply Chain Management Co Ltd, is now listed as the air freight specialist’s second-biggest shareholder, after Air China parent China National Aviation Holding with 45.0018%. Other shareholders include Cathay Pacific Airways China Cargo Holdings Co Ltd (12.24%) and Longstar Co Ltd (11.75%).

Cainiao Smart Logistics Networks has taken a number of actions on a global scale over the last year, adding new air, sea, and highway routes. It has entered into a partnership agreement with LATAM Airlines Group and Atlas Air to accelerate cargo connections between Asia and South America. It has signed a deal with Hong Kong Air Cargo to launch flights via an e-commerce hub located near Hong Kong Int'l. And it has launched a direct freight route between Zhengzhou and Budapest.

Cainiao’s international business is developing rapidly, and as of March 2021 the daily average cross-border parcel volume of its global parcel network exceeded 5 million, ranking it among the top four in the world.

Established in November 2003, Air China Cargo currently operates a fleet of fifteen aircraft, namely eight B777-200Fs, four B757-200(PCF)s, and three B747-400(FSCD)s, the ch-aviation fleets advanced module shows.