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Alibaba courts Australian brands for their organic and nutritional reputation


By Charlotte McEleny, Asia Editor

April 14, 2016 | 3 min read

Alibaba has announced that it will open its first Australian office to better serve its partners based in Australia and New Zealand.

It made the announcement this week as it invited over 190 Australian brands and the Australia Trade Commission to its Alibaba’s Xixi Campus in Hangzhou.

Maggie Zhou (pictured), managing director for Australia and New Zealand at Alibaba Group, said Australia was attractive to Chinese consumers because they have a reputation for organic and healthy foods.

“Australia is well-known as the origin of high-quality organic goods, such as baby and maternity products, health and nutrition, and fresh foods. These categories are among our top-selling international product categories, and are sought-after by many consumers in China. We are committed to work with Australian merchants to continuously expand the range of product selection to better serve the needs of Chinese consumers,” she said.

Alibaba has strong globalisation plans and Australia is the latest market to get attention from the Chinese ecommerce giant. Tmall’s B2C platforms, including, Tmall Global and Tmall Fresh Food, jointly launched a series of promotional campaigns, running from April 11th to 15th to tie in with Australia Week in China. Brands taking part in the promotion include Woolworths, Chemist Warehouse, Jessica’s Suitcase and Nature’s Way.

Joe Tsai, vice chairman of Alibaba Group, said: “Globalisation is a core strategy for Alibaba Group and it will be for the decades to come. As one of our key markets, Australia clearly plays a key part in this strategy. With the services and the hundreds of millions of user base that Alibaba has to offer, we are well positioned to further expand our collaborations with global businesses from around the world in bringing premium quality goods from different countries to our Chinese consumers.”

According to Alibaba, Australia is the fifth most popular country in terms of volume sold during its Alibaba Group 11.11 Global Shopping Festival.

The news comes as Alibaba has made significant investments into its global expansion. Earlier this week it announced it had ploughed $1bn of investment into Southeast Asian ecommerce firm Lazada, helping increase its footprint in the region.

According to Tech in Asia, the firm has also just announce that it got its wallet out once more, investing $1.25bn in Chinese food delivery startup

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