Alibaba Group Coordinates: (simplified Chinese: 阿里巴巴集团; traditional Chinese: 阿里巴巴集團; pinyin: Ālǐbābā Jítuán) is a privately owned Hangzhou-based group of Internet-based e-commerce businesses including business-to-business online web portals, online retail and payment services, a shopping search engine and data-centric cloud computing services. In 2012, two of Alibaba’s portals together handled 1.1 trillion yuan ($170 billion) in sales, more than competitors eBay and Amazon.com combined. The company primarily operates in the People’s Republic of China, and in March 2013 was estimated by The Economist magazine to have a valuation between $55 billion to more than $120 billion.
The company began in 1999 with the web site Alibaba.com, a business-to-business portal to connect Chinese manufacturers with overseas buyers. Its consumer-to-consumer portal Taobao, similar to eBay, features nearly a billion products and is one of the 20 most-visited websites globally. Alibaba Group's sites account for over 60% of the parcels delivered in China.
Alipay, an online payment escrow service, accounts for roughly half of all online payment transactions within China. The vast majority of these payments occur using Alibaba services. As of September 25, 2013, the company is seeking an initial public offering in the United States (US) after a deal could not be reached with Hong Kong regulators.
Industry: Internet, e-commerce, computer software
Founded: Hangzhou, China (1999)
Headquarters: Hangzhou (China Headquarters), Hong Kong (International Headquarters), China, Hong Kong
Area served: China and overseas
Key people: Ma Yun (Jack Ma), Executive Chairman, Jonathan Lu, CEO
Revenue: USD 4.1 billion (2012)
Owner(s): Ma Yun (Jack Ma), Executive Chairman
Employees: 24,000 (2012)