p Alibaba Group Holding is looking to the fast-growing online retail markets across Southeast Asia to accelerate its push towards two billion global consumers by 2020.

The company’s latest quarterly financial results showed that its US$1 billion acquisition of e-commerce services provider Lazada Group last year has started to pay dividends, according to analysts.

“In our view, the fourth-quarter results indicate that Alibaba’s third-party merchants are having success reaching Lazada’s active users across Southeast Asia, something that should persist in the years to come,” said Morningstar consumer strategist RJ Hottovy.

“We expect more than 50 per cent annual average revenue growth from Alibaba’s international retail commerce efforts over the next five years.”

Alibaba, which owns the South China Morning Post, on Thursday reported a record 60 per cent increase in revenue to 38.6 billion yuan (US$5.6 billion) in its fiscal fourth quarter ended March 31, up from 24.2 billion yuan in the same period last year.

That marked the highest growth rate the company has achieved since its public listing in New York in 2014.

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