Tech In Asia — Will all stores eventually move online? Or will the first-mover advantage of offline stores mean that they forever remain an important and significant part of the way people shop? Indian ecommerce site Snapdeal’s latest launch, Janus, shows that it may just be a hybrid of the two. Janus is an omni-channel platform that integrates all aspects of ecommerce – from ordering a product online to customizing it and getting it delivered offline.
Tech In Asia — China’s economy is slowing. That much, everybody knows. But how bearish (or bullish) you feel about that probably depends on your perspective. And Jack Ma? It should come as no surprise to anyone that he’s bullish. At a recent interview at Stanford University with Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang, Ma explained his personal take on China’s economic situation right now. What follows is a transcript of his remarks compiled and slightly edited by Tech in Asia.
Alibaba’s UC Browser announced during the Global Mobile Internet Conference Jakarta that they will establish their Southeast Asia headquarters in Indonesia’s capital Jakarta. With the new headquarters, UC Browser plans to further enhance their investment and distribution in Southeast Asia.
Business Insider — Some of the most powerful tech leaders got together in Seattle to greet Chinese President Xi Jinping on his visit to the US Wednesday. And based on the group photo tweeted out by Seattle Times reporter Matt Day, it was a star-studded event:
CKGSB — Jack Ma’s mix of charm, drive and self-deprecation was on display as he addressed the Economic Club of New York in the Grand Ballroom of the Waldorf Astoria in early June. As club members tucked into a lunch of herb-stuffed chicken breast, mushroom risotto and baby zucchini, the Alibaba founder and Executive Chairman breezed through topics that ranged from his days as an English teacher back in 1988 in Hangzhou to the future of his e-commerce powerhouse.
YIBADA — For the second time, Tencent was named the most valuable Chinese brand of the year, according to the Hurun Research Institute. The Shenzhen-based Internet giant, which operates the popular instant message service WeChat, posted a brand value jump of 33 percent, which is equivalent to 277 billion yuan, Hurun stated in a press release issued on Thursday.
Telecom Asia — Alibaba’s computing unit AliCloud opened its eighth data center on Tuesday. With the facility at Qiandao Lake in Zhejiang province, the company aims to set new benchmark in energy efficiency and data center technologies. Dedicated for Alibaba’s IaaS public cloud offering, Aliyun, the new data center is an 11-floor building providing 30,000m2 of floor space. With five floors of data hall space, the data center has a capacity to hold 50,000 servers. The project is a partnership with local data center facility provider Waton Cloud Data.
SHANGHAI: E-commerce giant Alibaba has denied its sales volume growth has slowed into single digits because of China’s faltering economy, the official Xinhua news agency reported, after comments by an executive raised worries over performance. The company dismissed media reports that turnover on its hugely popular online platforms would grow less than 10% for the quarter ending in September, Xinhua said late yesterday.
Business Insider — So which is the largest internet company in Asia? If you think the answer is Alibaba, do note, it was and it no more is. Achieving the numero uno position is Tencent Holdings, a Chinese investment holding company. Alibaba’s shares have slumped 4.7 % to $60.91 in New York earlier this week, making the online marketplace worth $153 billion. That’s below Tencent’s value for the first time since billionaire Jack Ma oversaw Alibaba’s record-breaking initial public offering in September 2014.
Nasdaq — AGCO Corporation signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Alibaba Group Holding Limited to boost product offerings in the Chinese rural market. Per the deal, the company will offer superior machinery to promote modern agricultural practices in the country. The MOU was signed by Gary Collar, General Manager of Asia Pacific and Senior Vice President of AGCO, and Frank Yu, Senior Director of Alibaba Group’s Rural Taobao business division, in the presence of Fred Yang, Vice President and Managing Director of AGCO China.
Bloomberg — Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. surrendered the title of Asia’s largest Internet company to Tencent Holdings Ltd., capping a 10-month slide for the e-commerce giant that wiped $140.7 billion from its market value. Shares of Alibaba fell 4.7 percent to $60.91 in New York on Tuesday, making the online marketplace worth $153 billion. That’s below Tencent’s value for the first time since billionaire Jack Ma oversaw Alibaba’s record-breaking initial public offering in September 2014.
Asia One — Amid the decline in its share price in New York, Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd has announced a cut in its campus recruitment quota. With the original goal of recruiting more than 3,000 fresh graduates in 2016, the Hangzhou-based company said on its official campus recruitment website that the recruitment quota will “shrink due to changes in the group’s talent strategy” and “those who were likely to be recruited will have to face tougher competition”.
Vietnam Net — Ha Noi-based CleverAds, said in an online report, that after a year of negotiations it will now provide Alibaba’s Global Gold Supplier (GGS) service to international exporters. Gold Supplier is the highest and most premium level of membership onAlibaba.com, helping maximise exposure to companies and business opportunities.
China Tech News — Chinese B2C e-commerce platform Tmall.com and China National Petroleum Corporation’s Hunan branch will integrate their resources to launch a mobile payment service model. Tmall.com, which is a subsidiary of Alibaba, said that the company will integrate Alibaba’s ecosphere to help CNPC Hunan implement an “Internet Plus” transformation that includes an online store, mobile payment, big data prediction abilities, and O2O services.
Asia One — One year ago, Jack Ma, the founder and chairman of Alibaba Group, decided to buy a 50-per cent stake in the Chinese Super League football club Guangzhou Evergrande for 1.2 billion yuan (S$268 million). Asked why, Ma half-jokingly replied that he had drunk too much with Evergrande Group’s Chairman Xu Jiayin and had made the decision within 15 minutes.
The Hindu — The Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. in partnership with the State run North Industries Group Corp or Norinco, a military industry heavyweight, has formed a joint venture company, with a tie up with Beidou Navigation Satellite system. The $310 million venture, based in Shanghai aims to provide subscribers with location and navigation information, based on the Beidou system.
Cloud Wards — Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba is looking to compete with Microsoft and Amazon through its cloud-computing sector– Aliyun. The company has launched “China’s first” AI platform, called DT PAI, to improve its cloud offer. According to Alibaba, the platform will allow developers and companies that use its e-commerce sites to analyze huge amounts of data. This will enable them to predict industry trends and user behavior.
Computer Weekly — Alibaba’s cloud computing arm is opening a data center in Singapore, which is good news for Asean businesses looking for more cloud options. Aliyun is set to open its latest cloud data center in Singapore next month. The Singapore facility will be the seventh globally for the cloud computing arm of Alibaba Group. Aliyun said its headquarters for overseas business will be based in Singapore to drive its overseas expansion plan.
Digi Times — More China-based Internet service providers are looking to enter the local smartphone market later in the second half of 2015, according to sources at Taiwan’s IC design houses. Alibaba and Qihoo 360 will launch their own brand models in cooperation with handset makers, said the sources. As new entries in the local smartphone market, both Internet service providers will be gearing up for China’s National Day holiday in October and Single’s Day promotions in November, the sources indicated.
TechCrunch — Aliyun, the cloud computing unit of Alibaba Group, is launching an artificial intelligence service that it claims is the first in China. Called DT PAI, the platform combines algorithms used by Alibaba with machine and deep learning techniques and presents them in a simple drag-and-drop interface. Aliyun says developers can use DT PAI to predict user behavior without having to write new code.