Jack Ma’s online trading platform, Alibaba, is expanding its presence in Australia and New Zealand and will open an office in Melbourne by the end of 2016.
The company already as a management team lined up, with Maggie Zhou as MD, supported by John O’Loghlen as business development director, and James Hudson running corporate affairs and marketing.
Michael Evans, group president of the world’s largest online commerce business, valued at more than $US200 billion, is visiting Australia this week to spruik the business, which is targetting a customer base of two billion.
Alibaba’s Tmall and Tmall Global sites are already used by around 1,300 Australian brands to flog everything wine to cosmetics, baby formula, vitamins and dairy products.
The likes of Blackmores, a2 Milk, Jurlique, Fonterra and Penfolds are using the platform, with Woolworths selling its home brand products via Tmall and Australia Post shipping wine via the Mandarin-only, business-to-business site 1688.com.
Chemist Warehouse is also playing in the space, which has 423 million buyers in China.
Beyond the e-commerce platforms, Evans is keen to push the full range of services Alibaba offers, which even include digital entertainment and travel logistics.
“ANZ is one of our key markets and a stronger presence here will advance our global goal of serving two billion consumers,” Evans said.