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Alibaba, affiliate back Ele.me with $1.25B investment

As expected,Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.and its affiliate Ant Financial struck a deal to inject $1.25 billion in Chineseonline food delivery service Ele.me, according to an April 13 post on Alibaba-fundednews website Alizila.

As part of the arrangement, Alibaba will invest $900 millioninto Shanghai-based Ele.me, while Ant Financial will invest $350 million. Upon completionof the deal, Ele.me will continue to operate as an independent company.

Also, Alibaba Executive Vice Chairman Joseph Tsai will be namedto Ele.me's board.

The investment is expected to accelerate the e-commerce giant'spush into China's local services market, also known as online-to-offline,or O2O ecosystem.