With humble beginnings in Hangzhou, Jack Ma went on to create an e-commerce titan that has grabbed the attention of China and the world. Today Jack Ma and Alibaba’s story has become the stuff that legends are made of. Duncan Clark has witnessed firsthand Jack Ma’s dizzying rise in China’s e-commerce firmament. A former investment banker at Morgan Stanley, Clark first got to know Jack Ma in 1999 when he met him in the small Hangzhou apartment where Ma and his friends famously founded Alibaba. In this interview, Clark, also the author of Alibaba, the House that Jack Ma Built, talks about Alibaba’s incredible story and its impact on China.
This year Alibaba broke all records on Singles Day with sales of $14.3 billion. Singles Day, or China’s Black Friday, was first invented by Alibaba in 2009. The idea was to create an annual sales event with crazy discounts supposedly for those who are single. (The fact that everyone, irrespective of their romantic status, jumped in and shopped is a different matter altogether.) This year a whopping 95 million users joined the cyber shopping fest. In other words, approximately almost one out of eight people in the world clicked the “buy” button on Alibaba’s marketplaces. What did it take to pull this off?
With companies like Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent branching out into new areas, China is witnessing the rise of a new breed of digital conglomerates.
The government should step in and regulate digital monopolies because at the end of the day, healthy competition benefits all.
During his whistle-stop trip to the US, Alibaba founder and Executive Chairman Jack Ma is busy courting small businesses
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This week, CEO Wang Jianlin missed the opportunity to become the richest man in China when the much awaited Dalian Wanda IPO turned out to be a damp squib and Xiaomi was valued at $45 billion, way higher than Uber.
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