China Mobile CommerceMobile commerce may be part of Alibaba’s future

Last Friday marked a marked a major milestone for Alibaba, one of the world’s largest e-commerce companies. Alibaba is often considered to be the Chinese version of both Amazon and eBay. While both these companies have a presence in China, Alibaba represents the vast majority of online sales that occur in the country. In 2012 alone, the company reported more than $170 billion in online sales, more than that reported from eBay and Amazon combined. Now, Alibaba is looking to expand beyond China and mobile commerce may be able to help in this endeavor.

Jack Ma announces retirement via concert

Alibaba’s interests in expansion come as the company’s founder and chairman, Jack Ma, announced his retirement. This announcement was made in front of more than 40,000 people that had packed into the Yellow Dragon Stadium in Hangzhou, China, where Ma broke the news of his retirement in a semi-concert setting. Ma is succeeded by Jonathan Lu, who has served as Ma’s right hand for the past 13 years. Lu has some ambitious views for the company’s future.

Alibaba showing strong interest in the mobile sector

Alibaba operates the largest online marketplace, and this marketplace is not restricted to consumers as it caters to businesses as well. With the world becoming increasingly reliant on mobile technology, the prospects of mobile commerce have been gaining more attention. Alibaba has been somewhat aloof of mobile commerce for some time, but the company has been seeing strong competition coming from companies like 360buy due to their ambitious use of mobile commerce services. Consumers are beginning to favor this form of commerce and this interest has begun pressuring companies like Amazon to begin offering mobile commerce services. Alibaba is not likely to continue ignoring this growing trend, especially if its plans for expansion are meant to succeed.

Company may be moving to enter into new markets soon

While Alibaba’s endeavors in the mobile commerce field have yet to be fully revealed, business analysts suggest that the company is beginning to position itself to enter into the European and American markets. Over the past several months, the company has been purchasing stakes in prominent mobile-centric companies, such as Autonavi, creators of China’s most successful map application. The company has recently launched its own mobile operating system as well in order to better connect with mobile consumers.