BUSINESS

Tao Girls: Taobao, Chinese Shopping Site, To Offer Model Delivery Service

04/21/2012 12:49 pm ET

Special delivery.

Customers of Taobao, which according to Bloomberg is the largest shopping site in China, will soon be able to get their products delivered by models, China Hush reports.

According to a HuffPost translation of China Finance Web, Taobao is "searching for Tao Girls to be beautiful delivery people."

China Broadcast Web breaks down how the service will work: Apparently, people can choose specific Tao Girls online who live in their city, and for an extra ten yuan, or about $1.58, that young woman will show up to the customer's door with the product he or she ordered.

Although multiple news sources in China are reporting the story, Taobao doesn't seem to be commenting on it officially. A reporter for China Broadcast Web asked a company official about the program, and he said, according to a HuffPost translation, "the media saw this issue and came directly to us to ask, but there's nothing we can say."

But China Hush notes that a vice president of Alibaba Group, Taobao's parent company, took to Weibo, the Chinese version of Twitter, earlier this month to comment on the program, so click over to China Hush to see what he said.

According to China Hush, Taobao started a Tao Girls website in 2010. It currently features over 40,00 members.

Tao Girls today has developed into a platform of Internet models where beautiful girls show off their beauty and outfits as well as posting their prices of Internet modeling and waiting to be hired.

It's unclear if the women featured on the Tao Girls site are the same women who will be participating in the delivery program.

Writing for Vice's Motherboard, Derek Mead notes that despite Taobao's 65 percent share of the online auction market, and projected sales of more than $157 billion this year, according to The Wall Street Journal, the new service may be a way to maintain a lead in the competitive environment.

Taobao is the third most-visited site in China and 14th most-visited site in the world, according to Alexa.

[Photo via mm.taobao.com]

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