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Amazon has invested $20 million of funding in Shanghai-based online food vendor Yummy77.

It is the first time that the U.S. e-commerce giant has invested in a Chinese company, ten years after it first entered the Chinese market. Amazon disclosed that it will hold a minority stake in Yummy77, which will continue its independent operation after the funding.

The funding is expected to help Yummy77 enrich product categories and expand operations beyond Shanghai.

Launched in February 2013, Yummy77 is focused on fresh and gourmet foods such as seasonal fruit, fresh seafood, eggs, meat, dairy products, etc. It is tapping the growing demand among urban Chinese residents for high-quality imported foods and swift delivery. The company’s sales reportedly exceeded 100 million yuan (around $16 million) in December last year, and its registered users reportedly surpassed 1 million as of February this year.

Amazon launched online fresh-food business Amazon Fresh in 2007 in the U.S. market, but it does not provide this service in China.

It is worth noting that Yummy77 is the B2C fresh-food unit of TRUE, a listed subsidiary of Chia Tai Group.

Although it is one of the global pioneers in the e-commerce industry, Amazon’s performance in the Chinese market is eclipsed by its Chinese peers. The company is putting more focus and becoming more active in the Chinese market with the launch of Kindle devices and cloud service AWS in China last year.

This story originally appeared on Technode.com. Copyright 2014

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