Alibaba Says “Open Sesame”


The Wall Street Journal looks at Yahoo-Alibaba from the e-commerce perspective, particularly the auction segment and the challenge Alibaba’s TaoBao presents for eBay. The article picks up on the presence of Softbank as an investor in Alibaba and notes the Yahoo-Softbank combo turned out badly for eBay in Japan.
From the article: Alibaba CEO Jack Ma “boasts that Alibaba now has the financial muscle and local expertise to deal a significant defeat to eBay and Meg Whitman, its high-profile CEO. ‘I know the Chinese user market and users better than Meg Whitman,” says Mr. Ma, clad in a lime-green shirt and sipping a cup of tea. “Once we start to charge, we can be profitable in 18 months.” (None of it would be possible if he wore a different color shirt and drank coffee.) Lots of China-Japan details.

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