JD.com’s ‘third space’: Seven Fun, Beijing
One of the emerging stories of the few years has been the arrival of the ‘third space’. Put simply, this is a place that is neither work nor home/relaxation, but something in between and outfits as diverse as WeWork and Starbucks with its massive Reserve Roastery outposts are typical of the manner in which change is being realised.
Now Chinese ecommerce giant JD.com has joined the party with Seven Fun in Beijing, a third space proposition that takes its lead from 7Fresh, the supermarket that uses technology to make the space between physical and online grocery shopping more seamless.
Seven Fun has, of course, a bar with what it claims is one of the best selections of “quality liquor” in the city (there are around 1,000 ‘craft beers’ on display), but there are also 12 eateries, offering a range of cuisines, eating and relaxing areas and a food retail offer.
The format is aimed squarely at the rapidly growing Chinese middle-class professional market and the country’s biggest cities will be targeted if this one bears fruit. Seven Fun has been open for a couple of weeks.