Alibaba Wants To Help US Small Businesses Sell More In China

Chris CrumBusiness

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Alibaba Group founder and Executive Chairman Jack Ma wrote an article for The Wall Street Journal in which he talked about the company's strategy for the U.S. market. According to him, it's "simple and clear" in that it wants to help U.S. entrepreneurs and small business owners, as well as businesses of all sizes, sell goods to a growing Chinese consumer class.

Ma said that with this strategy, Chinese consumers will get to buy "all the American products they want," while American jobs are created and U.S. exports are increased.

Ma is visiting the United States this week to meet with potential partners on ways to make it easier to sell American goods to Chinese customers.

"I feel most at home with entrepreneurs because a group of friends and I founded Alibaba Group 16 years ago believing that we could use technology to level the playing field, giving anyone who wanted to participate in global commerce a chance to succeed," he wrote. "We connect buyers with sellers, supplying aspiring entrepreneurs with everything they need to start, run and grow a business—including financing, payments, logistics, marketing, analytics and even cloud computing. Today there are about 10 million entrepreneurs running small businesses on Alibaba’s retail marketplaces in China, and our ecosystem has generated 14 million jobs."

"Alibaba Group was founded in China but created for the world. We want to connect small businesses in the West with the largest, fastest-growing market in the East," he added. "This strategy may come as a surprise to some, because many people view China through an outdated lens. The China of 2015 is virtually unrecognizable from the country a decade ago. While the first wave of globalization created a large working class in China, the next wave of growth has created a thriving middle class."

According to Ma, how the growing Chinese middle class spends its income is important for small businesses in America. He noted that China doesn't have near the brick-and-mortar store presence that America does, with online shopping having "leapfrogged' in-person shopping. Consumers are "eager to buy goods from abroad," he said.

Ma said he considers American entrepreneurs "strong role models for the world," and that he feels a "great kinship" with the U.S.

Here's a speech Ma gave to the Economic Club of New York on Tuesday:

In the speech, Ma talked about the difference between Alibaba and Amazon.

“We are different,” he said. “The difference between us and Amazon is we don’t buy and sell. We help small businesses buy and sell every day. We do not deliver our packages ourselves, though we have two million people who help [deliver] over 30 million packages per day… we don’t hold inventory, but we do have 350 million buyers.”

The main message Ma has been trying to get across appears to be that Alibaba isn't here to "invade America," but wants to have American businesses expand their offerings in China.

Image via YouTube

Chris Crum
Chris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow Chris on Twitter, on StumbleUpon, on Pinterest and/or on Google: +Chris Crum.