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The good news is  Yahoo China and Koubei.com (口碑网) are set to receive RMB 300 millions worth of additional fundings from their parent company,  Alibaba group, to develop their local search engine, according to the Sina Tech.

The news was confirmed by Yahoo China Vice President Shen Jianming yesterday. Yet, a dramatic turn happened as Miss Shen Jianming told the local media that she has resigned for personal reasons and depart from the company officially. Aliuser got the news from Beijing-based China TechNews.com.

Yahoo China and Koubei.com (口碑网) joined force together  again in order to develop an organizational and service-related website covering the area of Shanghai, Beijing and Guangzhou. Services on the site will include food, real estate, community services, leisure and culture, health care services, and education.

Miss Shen said her departure was attributed to the change of the company’s business approach. She was assigned to manage Koubei.com in Hangzhou, which was far away from her home town, Beijing.  She submitted her resignation a month ago after a few thoughts.

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Taobao Chief Operation Officer Zhang Yong spoke with China Knowledge @ Wharton recently about the Chinese Consumer to Consumer (C2C) platform. The following are some highlight by Aliuser:

Three stools to spur growth

  • Our credit (rating) system is open to everybody, so everyone can see your track record… And we think this system is also helpful to educate Chinese people as a whole to be reliable and build up trust among them
  • In order to address the issue of quality concerns, we have been trying for the past several years to promote an initiative called our “Customer Protection Program.”
  • we have a unique payment solution named “AliPay,” something like an escrow account which perfectly eliminates buyers’ concerns about e-commerce.

 Demographic findings

  • Actually, the online population in China is huge; however, the penetration rate, which refers to the number of online shoppers divided by all the Internet users, is only 26 percent in China, versus 80 percent in the U.S.
  • Our customers are a broad spectrum. Every day, there are more than one million people buying goods on Taobao. For different sexes, there are different categories. In general, the breakdown is almost equal, with slightly more women than men
  • Age wise, the 18-30 age group is by far the largest

 Price Advantage

  • Taobao has a big advantage on price. It’s usual that you will find a 10 percent to 12 percent price difference on our platform. So, with the same amount of money, you can buy more on Taobao. Therefore, the more price-sensitive the consumers are, the bigger the advantage Taobao will have

Mr Zhang was on board to Alibaba Group’s consumer-focused e-commerce site last month.

 

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Last week, Alibaba group’s on-line auction unit, Taobao.com, delivered two major messages to her users:

  • Taobao will continue to provide free services to her users 
  • Alibaba group plans to inject RMB 5 billions in Taobao over the next five years  in order to build its business

Jonathan Lu, president of Taobao, stated in an issued press release, “The CNY5 billion investment into the Taobao ecosystem demonstrates our long-term confidence in the Chinese economy, our optimism for China’s domestic consumption and our commitment towards creating job opportunities for entrepreneurs who harness the power of the Taobao marketplace.”

In face of challenge from Baidu and Tencent, Taobao has been stepping up its effort to  improve its B2C services by releasing http://i.mall.taobao.com, a stripped-down site optimized for Apple ipod users to browse and search products

It’s widely believed that Baidu‘s latest attempt to give a big push to her new C2C e-commerce platform, Youa.com will be taken as a threat. Renowned China search engine Baidu also beta tests BaiFuBao as her payment gateway. At this moment, Aliuser still cannot find any details on how this BaiFuBao will be functioned, what is the payment flow, fee structure and the cap on financed amounts.

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Joseph Tsai, Chief Financial Officer of Alibaba Group told Aliuser that his favorite colour was blue. Yet his heart was orange– Alibaba’s corporate color is “Orange” indeed!!

The comments came after Aliuser got a chance to speak to Mr Tsai before the Mid-Autumn Festival.

Mr Tsai also delved the group’s future strategy, focusing more on infrastructure and technology development. He noted that Alibaba group was rarely seen as a technology-related company now, but it was the corporate vision to get a top ranking in this respect.

During the casual meeting, Mr Tsai explained that the merger of Taobao.com and Alimama.com would be ‘win-win’ for both parties.  As Alimama’s online advertising model has lots of synergy with Taobao’s users and database profile, it could help Taobao’s shop owners to post and manage their advertising online.

In response to the latest decision of blocking search engine Baidu indexing Taobao shops and products in China, Mr Tsai said Taobao has already established a reputation for C2C eCommerce, he expected users would come to Taobao.com directly but not through Baidu.

Things are getting more interesting as Chinese portal Sohu.com, 51.com and Xiaonei have reportedly blocked Baidu from conducting searches of their sites. Anita Davis has more to tell in her report.

Preceding experiences have told us that the relationship between eBay and Google has turned sour as they collided to each other in business development. Would history be repeated itself in the East?

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Convergence to Alimama.com , Alibaba group’s online advertising arm, Taobao.com set herself a goal to surpass global retail giant Walmart in the next ten year.

In his email addressing to his internal staffAlibaba (1688) Chairman and Non-Executive Director Jack Ma hightlights his concept of “Great Taobao.com strategy” ( 大淘宝战略) by adopting a “unconventional” strategic plan.

He said that it’s time to take advantage of the profound opportunity in global eCommerce setting and to provide an optimized online shopping experience to users.

He said the changes will be implemented in several phases, yet no further details were revealed how and what the plan’s about. At the five-year anniverary ceremony, Mr Jack Ma stated that the C2C company planned to invest RMB 2 billion in the next five year. Rumors circulating in the market suggested that Taobao would acquire Joyo.com, which is owned by Amazon.com 

Taobao‘s transaction volume grew 170 percent last year to 43 billion yuan and has 80 million registered users currently.

Alimama.com  has covered 400,000 websites with focus on SME, daily traffic reached 80 millions.

Taobao Almama brothers
Taobao Alimama brothers

 

Photo courtesty of  freewebs.com /raijin-akuma2/supermariobros.htm

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