SF Express: Data Wars
(9 pages of text)
Case (Pub Mat)
SF Express Group Co. Ltd. (SF Express) was a leading express delivery and logistics solutions provider in China. In May 2017, SF Express became involved in a dispute with the logistics-tracking platform Cainiao Network Technology (Cainiao), which was controlled by Alibaba Group Holding Limited. SF Express and Cainiao were the two largest players in China’s express delivery market. The dispute, which involved an SF Express–affiliated smart package locker company that declined a data-sharing request from Cainiao, caused SF Express and Cainiao to sever their ties over proprietary data and cybersecurity. This severance caused significant disruption to China’s e-commerce sector. After regulatory intervention, both parties agreed to resume sharing data for the time being and had to negotiate a resolution to their data dispute within 30 days. The chief information officer of SF Express needed to come up with an immediate solution to the dispute as well as a long-term data strategy for SF Express.
This case can be used in undergraduate and graduate-level courses on information systems, business strategy, data management, supply chain management, or operations management. This case introduces students to the emerging express delivery industry in China. After working through the case and assignment questions, students will be able to do the following:
- Describe the unique value proposition of the express delivery industry in China.
- Identify major players in the Chinese express delivery market and compare their different business models.
- Explain the importance of data management and data security.
Transportation and Warehousing
China, Large, 2017
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