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Alibaba’s Former US Marketplace 11 Main Closes Monday

Visitors to the 11Main.com marketplace launched by Alibaba 2 years ago were greeted with a message on Monday that the site had “moved” to OpenSky.com. However, merchants must open a store on OpenSky if they aren’t already selling there.

Likewise, 11 Main shoppers will have to open a new account at OpenSky if they don’t already shop there. Sellers will be able to access their 11Main.com Shop Center through May 31, 2016, to process orders and returns.

EcommerceBytes broke the news of Alibaba’s US marketplace launch in February 2014 while it was still operating in stealth mode. While US sellers often resent the competition that Chinese sellers present, many welcomed the site, believing Alibaba’s ownership gave it a better chance of success in competing against eBay and Amazon.com.

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Those hopes sank over time and were dashed last June when Alibaba Group sold 11 Main to OpenSky, becoming a minority shareholder with a 37% stake in OpenSky. Alibaba also sold Vendio, Auctiva, and Singlefeed to OpenSky.

We noted last fall that 11Main.com displayed the message, “11 Main will soon move to OpenSky.com! Shop from some of your favorite 11 Main merchants and more. Shop OpenSky,”

On Monday, company founder and CEO John Caplan said they had been messaging to merchants about the change over the past 60 days and had migrated most merchants onto OpenSky. “Most are participating in our marketing and promotion programs to help them boost their orders and get in front of more qualified shoppers. OpenSky today reaches 20 million US women every day,” he said.

OpenSky’s Shawn Horswill said the company decided to consolidate onto the OpenSky technology stack to help merchants sell more by using the OpenSky personalization and the self-serve merchant tools they’ve built. “We’re seeing strong momentum helping merchants get their goods in front of buyers and our investments in customer service and technology make us the best way to grow a business.”

In addition to encouraging sellers to open a shop on OpenSky, the site states, “We can also help you sell your items on eBay or Amazon through Auctiva or Vendio, two important members of the OpenSky family. These trusted products have helped millions of successful merchants automate the selling process with the tools to list faster and sell smarter across these platforms.”

If you’re a seller on 11Main.com, you can learn more on the OpenSky website.

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Ina Steiner

Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. Send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.


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