Alibaba Group Holding Limited is an eCommerce and Internet technology giant headquartered in the People's Republic of China. Its core platform, Alibaba.com, is the world’s 3rd largest eCommerce platform by sales. The company, through its vast network of subsidiary companies, provides the infrastructure and marketing to help merchants of all sizes develop their brands and to connect with customers in the People's Republic of China and internationally. The company also aids other businesses with a vast array of digital and logistical solutions with a reach that spans the globe.
Alibaba was co-founded by Jack Ma in 1999 when it became clear the Internet and digitization were the future of commerce. Mr. Ma is a billionaire investor, businessman, and philanthropist who believes in an open and free-market economy. The company went public in September 2014 with an IPO on the NYSE. The IPO set a record with its valuation of $25 billion and the company is now worth more than $225 billion and ranked among the 10 most valuable companies by market cap. Alibaba is also ranked 5th largest globally in regards to its work in AI, and it owns the world's largest B2B, B2C, and C2C eCommerce portals. In 2022, Alibaba’s Singles Day event brought in $139 billion to set a new one-day record.
The principal purpose of Alibaba Group Holding Limited is to open the Chinese market and connect it to the world. The company operates through seven segments including China Commerce, International Commerce, Local Consumer Services, Cainiao, Cloud, Digital Media and Entertainment, and Innovation Initiatives and Others.
The company’s eCommerce platforms include Taobao Marketplace, Tmall, Alimama, 1688.com, Alibaba.com, Aliexpress, Lazada, Trendyol, and Daraz. Taobao Marketplace is a social-media eCommerce platform while Alimama is a monetization platform for entrepreneurs. 1688.com and Alibaba.com are wholesale marketplaces where individuals and businesses can connect with bulk items and the remainder are eCommerce retail platforms and search engines targeting specific markets. In addition, the company also operated a retail chain called Freshippo and Tmall Global which is an import platform for eCommerce.
Other digital services provided by Alibaba include Taoxianda, which is a digital integration service for FMCG goods and grocery retailers, and Cainiao Network which is a logistical services platform complemented by Ele.me, a delivery and services platform.
Alibaba also supports the infrastructure of the Internet with a range of products and services that include computing, storage, network, security, database, big data, and IoT connectivity. This segment includes a suite of cloud-based services such as Alibaba Pictures and content platforms that provide streaming media.