Can ByteDance Breach Alibaba’s Infrastructure Moat and Become An Ecommerce Giant? (Asia Tech Strategy – Podcast 82)

This podcast is about Alibaba’s 2020 earnings and the strategy implications. But it is really about how Alibaba is positioned as a “product / service + commerce infrastructure” business. And whether ByteDance can break into Chinese ecommerce with an “attention + mini programs strategy”. It’s really a cool and important question.

You can listen to this podcast here or at iTunesGoogle Podcasts and Himalaya.

The cited Alibaba presentations are here:

The cited Bloomberg article on ByteDance is here:

The cited quotes from Alibaba are below. I added the highlights.

“During the past fiscal year, we made significant progress on our three key strategies, namely domestic consumption, globalization and cloud computing. Such progress demonstrated the tremendous power of Alibaba’s digital commerce infrastructure as well as our long-term commitment to invest for the future and to create value for our consumers, merchants and partners through innovations. ”

“As the largest digital consumption marketplace in China, the Taobao app will continue to strengthen its comprehensive supply of branded products, value-for-money products, agricultural products, imported products and differentiated long-tail products to meet the diversified demands of our consumers. In underpenetrated categories, such as grocery, real estate, home furnishing and pharmaceuticals, we will redefine the consumer journey and digitalized experience for the sector to enhance its online and New Retail penetration. We will also work on improving the overall consumer experience and engagement in the Taobao app by offering diversified consumer journeys based on different user segmentation and intent.  At the same time, we are improving the tools and enabling capabilities for merchants to enhance their customer engagement and are reviewing our platform policies to lower their operating costs.”

“We believe the key to unlocking the full value of the community marketplace model is not only about the standalone P&L of the business but also about the overall efficiency and servicing capabilities of the entire commerce platform where the business sits, and we believe the latter can generate far greater value than the former. Alibaba has the most sophisticated and efficient commerce infrastructure in China, with the most comprehensive product and service offerings to serve consumers of diverse segmentation and demands.”

My blue diamond chart for Alibaba is below:


Related articles:

From the Concept Library, concepts for this article are:

  • New Retail
  • Online Merge Offline (OMO)
  • Mini Programs

From the Company Library, companies for this article are:

  • Alibaba
  • ByteDance


I write and speak about digital China and Asia’s latest tech trends.

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