New York: Alibaba Group Holding Ltd has struck a deal to become a top sponsor of the Olympic Games through 2028, betting that greater exposure to a global audience will help it reach consumers and promote its cloud computing business.

China’s largest online marketplace will become one of a dozen or so top Olympic partners, joining the likes of Coca Cola Co. and Samsung Electronics Co. in the highest rung of sponsorship at a cost estimated in the hundreds of millions of dollars. The Chinese Internet firm will provide online computing services and data analytics for the sporting contest, while creating a marketplace for official merchandise. And it will help develop an online video channel for viewers in China, the world’s largest consumer market.

The company founded by billionaire Jack Ma becomes one of the few Chinese sponsors, such as Lenovo Group Ltd, to pay for the right to sport the iconic five-ring logo. Alibaba, which typically eschews costly marketing, is keen to showcase its nascent cloud computing business on an international stage while reaching out to consumers around the world. For the International Olympic Committee, its involvement spells greater Chinese engagement and, potentially, revenue.

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It “will be a clear demonstration of what Alibaba’s innovation platform can deliver," said the company’s chief marketing officer, Chris Tung. “The strategic alliance will help grow Alibaba’s presence as a global brand."

It’s been almost a decade since Chinese enthusiasm for the Olympics peaked with the 2008 Beijing Summer Games, when the country emerged as a dominant athletic powerhouse. The nation’s medal showing in Rio, however, was criticized back home.

Alibaba will kick off its Olympic tour in Tokyo in 2020. Companies including Canon Inc., Nippon Life Insurance and Fujitsu Ltd are already paying upwards of of 15 billion yen ($125 million) for their own partnerships, according to Japan’s Kyodo News.

The move dovetails with its long-term ambitions. Alibaba wants to get half its revenue from outside its home country, yet as of 2016 three-quarters of sales still come from China. It’s been touting that dominant home-market share to try and get US merchants to use its sites to sell to Chinese consumers—a way to offset slowing growth at home—but Alibaba remains an unfamiliar name to many.

Its cloud business—modeled on Inc.’s AWS—is its most international and, though just a few years old, already close to breaking even. Alibaba has now placed cloud at the heart of its global expansion, eyeing top share in Japan in two years and beefing up its presence from the Middle East to the US. The service already hosts more than a third of China’s websites.

“It’s the first company to extend a partnership with the IOC and Olympic movement through 2028," Timo Lumme, the IOC’s chief marketing officer, said of Alibaba. “Potentially there will be other Chinese partners." Bloomberg