Alibaba and ICBC to Offer Online Payment, Financing Services
By Ina Steiner
Alibaba.com, a B2B marketplace for global and domestic China trade, and the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) have signed a strategic cooperation agreement under which they will work together to provide business loans to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and to build a joint online platform offering services such as online financing, online payments and financial consulting.
ICBC, in partnership with Alibaba.com, will grant business loans based on a company's ecommerce track record and online trust rating. Alibaba.com said the program will be of particular help to Chinese SMEs that need financing for domestic and overseas expansion, but which have limited assets or a short credit history. Alibaba.com has built a central database of online credit-related information as well as an evaluation and risk management system. The program will be tested first in Zhejiang province before being rolled out across Mainland China.
Yang Kaisheng, President of ICBC, said, "By cooperating with Alibaba.com we are combining credit with the Internet and ecommerce, which will ultimately provide a better service to our customers."
The announcement is the next stage in the strategic relationship between the Alibaba Group and ICBC, which began in May 2005.
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 email@example.com.
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