EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 2243 - March 15, 2010     3 of 4

Alibaba Does Not Rule out PayPal Integration

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Alibaba said on Sunday it continues to have conversations with industry players, but has nothing to report at this time after rumors surfaced last week it had a deal with eBay to integrate PayPal on its B2B marketplace. The Wall Street Journal quoted an anonymous source last week who said Alibaba would add eBay's online payment service PayPal to its AliExpress international marketplace, citing "Alipay's low international brand awareness."

(Alibaba announced on Monday that Alipay had just topped the 300 million registered users milestone.)

AliExpress is a website for small entrepreneurs in the U.S. looking to source product from China. Retailers and online sellers can buy products in smaller lots than generally available on Alibaba.com, and payment is made using the company's Alipay online payment service that utilizes an escrow model.

Alibaba spokesperson Linda Kozlowski said it was not a secret that Alibaba started meeting with a lot of companies in March 2009 when a contingent met with companies in the Bay area. "We've continued conversations with several companies," she said. "We always keep an eye out for solutions to help our customers, but there's no agreement at this time."

Alibaba's founder and Chairman Jack Ma spent two weeks in the United States last year with top executives on a team-building exercise and had meetings with eBay, Amazon.com, Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, Apple, Starbucks, and GE to discuss possible partnerships.

Many online and auction marketplaces offer PayPal on their sites despite competing with eBay, including Etsy.


About the author:

Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.


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