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"Daigou" stimulates local delivery businesses

As Christmas is around the corner, many delivery companies in San Gabriel Valley are confronting one of the busiest seasons through the year. They are shipping millions of goods to everywhere in China, the Chinese newspaper World Journal reported.

Many of these delivery companies are owned and run by Chinese business owners. And the majority of their clientele is also from the Chinese community. Moveover, they are part of China’s multi-billion Daigou (代购) business.

Daigou is a trending word in China, roughly translated to English it means "shopping on behalf of…" As the Chinese middle class grows, their growing needs of buying cheaper and, maybe, better quality products from abroad stimulate the international retailing and delivery business.

Even USPS wants to scoop a share of this market. The company has collaborated with local delivery companies in SGV and tailored a special discount for customers who are mailing parcels to China during this holiday season.

USPS packages piling up inside a Chinese delivery store

The original price for mailing a package to China was around $40 for the first pound and one to two dollars for every extra pound. Now, with the special discount, the rate for USPS membership holders is $10 for the first pound and four dollar per extra pound, and the rate for regular customers is $12 for the first pound and four dollar eight cents for every extra pound, the World Journal reported.

The professional Daigou agents can buy almost anything for the customers in Mainland China, from formula, nuts to luxury handbags and even small appliances. Thanks to promotions and discounts during this holiday season, different types of products have been shipped to China through the delivery companies in SGV every week. Some employees of these companies have to work overtime everyday to deal with full loaded storages and the spring-up new orders, the World Journal reported.

Booming business means the competition is also fierce. A Chinese couple from Alhambra told the World Journal that they have been in the Daigou business for nearly seven years. Though they can still get enough orders from China, the profit is shrinking due to the fierce competition. “This business doesn’t have a threshold. Anyone can jump into it. So the competition is accelerating,” they said.

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