Busy Alibaba: Alizila, Yahoo, eBay & Some Lessons.

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Alibaba’s business magic (Alibaba.com, AliPay, Taobao) is well known by now, and the annual AliFest of headlines has come around again – along with a spat with (shareholder) Yahoo, news of its Alizila news (or PR) service, and competition with eBay. We will not delve into detail here, but wanted to string some of the news together (from what we have captured recently on twitter) for reference.

• PR / Alibaba news RT @imagethief: New post (at long last): Alizila is PR. Be proud! http://is.gd/f5lTW Motivated by a post from @HanaRAlberts.

• Alibaba + Yahoo = Aliboohoo? RT @BeyondBrics: Online business in China: high stakes, short tempers http://bit.ly/bj053L. The FT reports: “…according to the South China Morning Post…Yahoo HK may look for advertising from small and medium-sized Chinese businesses. Yahoo has not confirmed or denied the comments. If true, Yahoo HK’s expansion would come as an unwelcome distraction for Alibaba… An Alibaba spokesman told Reuters: “If Yahoo begins to compete with Alibaba for customers in China, we will have to re-evaluate our relationship with Yahoo further in light of this activity and the intentions it implies”.

• US expansion: RT @weishutong: #WSJ blog: #Alibaba announced to create 100,000 jobs in the US – indirectly http://bit.ly/9waRqc

• More on Alibaba RT @chinahearsay: …Has Yahoo’s CEO Wrecked the Valley’s Most Valuable Chinese Relationship? http://is.gd/f723Q

• Holding on! RT @WSJChina: Yahoo to Retain Alibaba Stake http://on.wsj.com/9WlVyj

It seems Yahoo would be foolish to push Alibaba too far, but sensible to hold on to what looks like a solid asset in a growing market. Watch this space.

As for eBay…

• Alibaba / Alipay noted too RT @fonstuinstra: CEO: EBay to focus on cross-border China trades http://ht.ly/2CGpj. SFGAte notes: [eBay’s] “Donahoe said Alibaba Group and its Alipay system shouldn’t be seen as rivals to eBay and PayPal. PayPal now has 1 million users in China, he said. Alibaba Group said its rival Alipay system has 300 million registered users”…”Alibaba dominates the Chinese domestic market,” Donahoe said in the interview. “We are the leading cross-border global e-commerce and payments network. I don’t view Alibaba as a competitor. I view them as a colleague and a potential partner.”

• @hhwang Invaluable Lessons from eBay-Alibaba Battle http://goo.gl/fb/xmq0K. As Helen Wang (author of The Chinese Dream) puts it:

“Jack Ma represents a new generation of savvy Chinese competitors whom should not be underestimated…Alibaba provides an invaluable lesson for multinationals that want to succeed in China market:

First, eBay failed to recognize that the Chinese market and the business environment are very different from that of the West. EBay sent a German manager to lead the China operation and brought in a chief technology officer from the United States. Neither one spoke Chinese or understood the local market. It was eBay’s biggest mistake. Second, because the top management team didn’t understand the local market, they spent a lot of money doing the wrong things, such as advertising on the Internet in a country where small businesses didn’t use the Internet. The fact that eBay had a strong brand in the United States didn’t mean it would be a strong brand in China. Third, rather than adapt products and services to local customers, eBay stuck to its “global platform,” which again did not fit local customers’ tastes and preferences.”

Alibaba is one of those companies worth watching, and the story has lessons for others businesses in China.

阿里巴巴 Alibaba

2 Responses to “Busy Alibaba: Alizila, Yahoo, eBay & Some Lessons.”

  1. Tweets that mention Archive » Busy Alibaba: Alizila, Yahoo, eBay & Some Lessons.| China Business Blog -- Topsy.com Says:

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