Alibaba To Focus More On Overseas E-Commerce In Face Of Slowing China Growth

Alibaba, largest e-commerce company of China, told its investors that international e-commerce would be its main emphasis going forward as the company looks to develop new avenues of revenues following a challenging year in its home market.

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd restructured its e-commerce business earlier this month abd created a separate China and international operations, with Jiang Fan, the CEO of Alibaba’s iconic Taobao and Tmall marketplaces, leading the latter.

Alibaba’s Deputy CFO, Toby Xu, claimed that foreign e-commerce “will become one of the core growth drivers,” adding that Cainiao, Alibaba’s logistics unit, generates 57 per cent of revenue from overseas. This was his first major public remarks since being named this month to take over as CFO.

Alibaba announced earlier in the two-day investor event that it had set a target of $100 billion in gross merchandise value (GMV) for Lazada, its Southeast Asian e-commerce service.

According to the presentation, Lazada achieved $21 billion in GMV in the one year period from September 2020 to September 2021.

Outgoing CFO Maggie Wu stated that overseas commerce would be included in Alibaba’s broader “Core Commerce” financial division, alongside commerce from its domestic facing platforms, in results.

Local consumer services, including as delivery and mapping services, as well as Cainiao, will fall under this heading.

There was also a hint to social welfare, with four of Xu’s seven investment categories relating to projects like rural revitalization and China’s ageing population.

Meanwhile, Alibaba CEO Daniel Zhang has committed to cut emissions from the company’s supply chains and transportation networks by half by the end of the decade.

Any mention of Ant Group, Alibaba’s 33 percent-owned financial services firm, was absent from the presentation.

The Chinese government authorities had made a last minute intervention last year and stopped an Indian Public Offering of Ant Financial which was worth $37 billion.

After that incident, Alibaba co-founder Jack Ma had moved away from public view as a year-long regulatory crackdown was started by the Chinese authorities.

Its annual revenue prediction was also lowered by Alibaba for the current fiscal year in November, lowering it from a target of 29.5 per cent to between 20 and 23 per cent.

Pinduoduo Inc, which has won over consumers in rural China, and ByteDance-owned Douyin, which has expanded in China’s expanding livestreamed e-commerce market, are among the company’s competitors.

(Adapted from


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