Bengaluru: China’s e-commerce major Alibaba Group now claims to have over 960 million annual active users across its digital apps and products targeted at consumers, according to the company’s chief executive officer Daniel Zhang.
Alibaba Group currently has multiple China-focused e-commerce platforms including Taobao—a live-streaming app for merchants to sell and market long-tail goods, and Tmall, which is an online business-to-consumer (B2C) retail platform largely used small merchants. Alibaba also operates two different online-to-offline (O2O) retail businesses, including Freshippo and Tmall Supermarket.
Speaking at Alibaba’s annual ‘Investor Day’ presentation, chief executive Zhang revealed that out of the 960 million annual active users, around 130 million are exclusively from Alibaba’s global facing products.
Currently, Alibaba Group’s global-facing products include the online wholesale platform Alibaba.com (available in India) and consumer-focused e-commerce platform Lazada.com, which was acquired from Rocket Internet Group in 2016.
A large part of Alibaba Group’s penetration in China comes from its support for Chinese language across all its apps and services. On the other hand, India’s largest e-commerce platform Flipkart recently announced support for Hindi language, through which Flipkart is eyeing to onboard around 200 million users primarily in Tier-2 and Tier-3 markets.
Ant Financial chief executive Eric Jing said at the event that Alibaba-owned digital payments arm Alipay had around 1.2 billion registered users as of June 2019. Alipay’s massive user base comes largely from its strategic payments partnerships across key markets like India, Thailand, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Malaysia, South Korea, and Pakistan.
In India, Alipay has an exclusive payment partnership with Paytm, which is also backed by Alibaba Group, and its rival Tencent Holdings. In January 2016, Paytm and Alibaba Group had announced a strategic tie-up through which Paytm and Alipay users and merchants were allowed to use each other’s platform for making cross-border payment settlements.
Some of other Alipay partnerships abroad include TrueMoney in Thailand, GCash in the Philippines, kakaopay in South Korea, DANA in Indonesia, AlipayHK in Hong Kong, Touch n’ Go Digital in Malaysia, Easypaisa in Pakistan and bKash in Bangladesh.
However, the majority of Alipay users are from China which touched around 900 million registered users as of June 2019, according to Alibaba Group chief executive Zhang. “We also currently have an offline merchant payment acceptance facility in 56 markets abroad and in China…these include brick-and-mortar stores, restaurants, hotels, and small shops," Zhang said during the ‘Investor Day’ presentation today.