Alibaba Strikes Again!! (and again, and again…)
Alibaba strikes again, and again, and again! It was just September 23rd, when we brought you news of Alibaba’s IPO release Alibaba, the huge waves that crashed against US shorelines as it rolled out. Well, it appears that not only is this a common occurrence, but it’s a regular tsunami pattern that engulfs and consumes a huge market.
China has seen the “Bill Gates” of their economy in a variety of forms over the years, Alibaba stands out as a top contender amongst the greats, boasting astronomical sales revenues for the parent company of now eight of the economy’s largest market capitalists. While Alibaba acquires AliTrip, the next tsunami is strengthening and is set to engulf and further consume the travel market sector.
Alibaba Group’s major businesses include capturing the markets which boast titles of:
- China’s largest online shopping destination (Taobao.com – Taobao Marketplace)
- China’s most popular group buying marketplace online (Juhuasuan.com)
- A leading provider of cloud computing services for entrepreneurs and businesses (Aliyun.com – Alibaba Cloud Computing)
- China’s largest online 3rd Party Platform for retailers and brands (Tmall.com)
- China’s leading online wholesale marketplace (1688.com)
- A global online marketplace providing direct purchases from China for consumers (AliExpress.com)
- China’s largest global online small business wholesale platform (Alibaba.com) and now
- A leading online travel booking platform, which is being innovatively developed to extend its current reaches by incorporating more features and options to the consumer.
The Alibaba Group also has a hand in payment processing through AliPay.com. They hold control of operating a central logistics system for China Smart Logistics, where they also hold 48% ownership. The logistics system networks express delivery companies in China.
From Striking up a Start-Up Company, to creating a Media Frenzy, and even Striking Out
Alibaba may keep sticking their hand in the cookie jar when it comes to cornering markets and taking on other avenues of development, but sometimes they get caught red-handed. In 2011, Alibaba lost its battle for the ownership rights to the domain Alibaba.info.
The decision came due to lack of sufficient evidence of bad-faith registration allegations. This was partially due to the fact that Alibaba waited 6 years after the date of the registration to file a complaint. The remaining reasons included making claims of notoriety during the registration period, yet the only supporting documentation provided was for several years after the registration, and add to that the Alipay.info domain name registration taking place just four days after Alibaba.info was registered.
This strike won’t get Alibaba thrown out of the game, just look at the methods of business growth between 2005 and up to the second quarter of 2014 alone:
- CIW August 2012 Feb Sources: WSJ, Reuter, Forbes, China Internet Watch Copyright © 2014: Yahoo paid US$1 billion in cash for 40% stake in Alibaba; it also merged its China-based subsidiaries into Alibaba
- 2005 – Feb 2006: Yipai.com, similar to Taobao, was merged into Alibaba Taobao. Yipai had 7.29% market share in Q3 2005. (Source: Analysis International)
- September: Alibaba acquired Koubei.com, one of China’s largest online classified listing companies, which was founded by an ex- Alibaba employee.
- 2009: Alibaba paid RMB 540 million to acquire Net.cn, a leading basic Internet services provider (web hosting, domain names, etc.)
- December: Alibaba.com completes the acquisition of HiChina Web Solutions
- January 2010: Alibaba invested in Shanghai Baozun, an e-commerce outsourcing service provider Mar Alibaba purchased shares of private courier company – Xing Chen Ji Bian Jun Alibaba invested $35 million to Emapgo (EMG; develops digital navigation maps) to become its biggest shareholder.
- August: Alibaba acquired U.S. E-Commerce software firm Vendio Alibaba acquired Auctiva, a company that develops eBay auction management software.
- July 2011: Alibaba joined in Meituan’s (a group-buying website) US$50M Series B financing
- November: Alibaba invested in DDMap, a lifestyle e-commerce service provider
- April 2013: Alibaba, Tencent and Ping An Insurance co-founded Zhong An Online Property Insurance Co. which was expected to be China’s first property insurance company selling all products online. Alibaba acquired a leading music service company Xiami, founded by a former Alibaba employee Alibaba bought a stake of about 18% in Sina Weibo for $586 million Alibaba acquired mobile analytics provider Umeng for $80 million Alibaba invested in Taxi booking service provider Kuaidi Alibaba invested in travel experience sharing app Zailushang (117go.com)
- May: Alibaba invested $294 million and took a 28% stake in digital mapping company AutoNavi Holdings Ltd; it bought AutoNavi in Feb 2014 in a deal that values the Chinese company at $1.5 billion With registered capital of 5 billion yuan, Alibaba set up Cainiao Network in Shenzhen with its partners to build their own logistics network to cover entire China.
- July: Alibaba invested in travel website Qyer.com
- August: Alibaba invested RMB 3.1 billion in UCWeb in March 2013 and fully bought out UCWeb in Jun 2014, who is the maker of one of China’s most popular web browsers. Bought a minority stake in online shopping company ShopRunner
- September: Alibaba acquired Kanbox, the personal cloud storage service
- October: Alibaba invested $50 million in app search engine Quixey Alibaba’s Alipay took control of Tianhong Asset Management Co with 1.18 billion yuan investment for 51% stake.
- December: Alibaba invested HK$2.82 billion in Haier, including HK$1.86 billion to form a new joint venture with Haier’s wholly owned logistics unit Goodaymart
- January 2014: Alibaba and Yunfeng Capital, a private equity firm founded by Jack Ma, bought pharmaceutical data provider CITIC 21 CN for $170 million Alibaba bought a controlling stake in ChinaVision Media Group Ltd for $804 million to gain access to TV and movie content. Purchase was completed in Jun 2014, company renamed Alibaba Pictures Group Ltd.
- March: Alibaba invested $15 million in 1stdibs, the fast-growing luxury e-commerce site A leading online education platform Feb Alibaba announced it would invest about $692 million in Intime Retail Group Co., owner of department stores and supermarkets Invested in Baicheng.com, a travel website focusing on outbound trips Invested $215 million for a minority stake in the messaging and free-calling app Tango
- Spring 2014 (April-June): Alibaba announced to invest SGD 313 million in Singapore Post for 10.35% stake Hundsun, a well known supplier of financial software and network services, was acquired by Zhejiang Rongxin owned by Alibaba’s founder Jack Ma with 3.299 billion yuan (USD 534.38M) Jack Ma and other partners agreed to pay 6.54 bln yuan ($1.05 bln) for a 20% stake in China’s Wasu Media Holding. Alibaba and Wasu would cooperate for online content and Internet TV Alibaba (16.5% stake), Yunfeng (2%) agree to buy $1.22 billion stake in Youku Tudou Alibaba agreed to take a 50% stake in Guangzhou Evergrande Football Club