The next horizon for corporate sales and growth? That would be some of the biggest and relatively untapped markets in the world, including China, India, and the Middle East.
Unilever — it appears — has decided to act.
“Alibaba Group and Unilever China announced a comprehensive strategic partnership that will enable Unilever to reach customers across China with unprecedented precision and effectiveness through Alibaba Group’s data-driven ecosystem,” according to a news release. “Key areas of collaboration include rural China penetration, cross-border e-commerce, consumer protection, and Big Data.”
“We are very pleased to amplify our partnership with an industry leader such as Unilever,” said Daniel Zhang, CEO of Alibaba Group. “We look forward to building on our success in sales over the years and taking the collaboration to the next level. Moving forward, Alibaba Group and Unilever will jointly innovate in Big Data analytics application, cross-border e-commerce, and supply chain management.”
“Unilever Week” on Tmall, scheduled for July 22 to 24, will mark the start of this partnership agreement. Tmall is Alibaba’s global shopping platform. Unilever China opened its first Tmall flagship store in June 2011 and a Tmall Global flagship in September 2014, leveraging the free trade zone and bonded warehouse model.
“Alibaba has changed the shopping habit of Chinese consumers,” noted Marijn Van Tiggelen, Unilever North Asia President. “Its mission is to make it easy to do business everywhere, and its vision is to build the future infrastructure of commerce. This meets the Unilever’s development needs in China
Unilever prizes Alibaba’s innovation most of all.
“Alibaba is the leading internet company in China, with the most innovative thinking,” said Tiggelen. “It’s not only an online store, but also a solution platform for online payment, e-finance, and e-commerce logistics. In cooperation with Alibaba, Unilever can provide more convenient services to consumers in China.”