JD.com, the second-largest e-commerce firm in China after the Alibaba Group, has announced revenues of 100.1 billion yuan renminbi (€13bn-$16bn) for the first quarter of 2018, marking an increase of 33.1 percent from the first quarter of 2017. It also showed its slowest quarterly revenue growth since the company went public, and its fifth quarter of slower growth. The results were impacted by heavy spending on logistics, new business initiatives and mounting competition.

Product revenues increased by 31 percent, while service revenues increased by 60 percent. The operating margin of JD Mall declined slightly to 2.1 percent from 2.2 percent in the same period of last year, excluding extraordinary items. Still, net income from continuing operations attributable to ordinary shareholders reached RMB 1,524.9 million (€201.5m-$240.8m), up sharply from RMB 298.8 million.

JD.com noted that, in the twelve months to March 31, 2018, the number of its active customer accounts had increased by 27.6 percent to 301.8 million.

After a first quarter in which sales are seasonally low for China's e-commerce firms, sales are expected to pick up in the second quarter, when JD.com holds its flagship “618” shopping festival. The event, consisting of 18 days of discounts ending on June 18, is China's second-largest online shopping event after the Singles' Day promotion piloted by Alibaba in November. June is JD's anniversary month.