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Alibaba group founder meets PM Modi to help empower SMEs in India

On Monday, Jack
Ma, founder and executive chairman of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, called
on Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

According to a Business
Standard
report, the duo reportedly discussed the potential of e-commerce
and mobile telephony in driving small and medium enterprises, among other
things.

On Monday, Jack
Ma, founder and executive chairman of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, called
on Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

According to a Business
Standard
report, the duo reportedly discussed the potential of e-commerce
and mobile telephony in driving small and medium enterprises, among other
things.

PM Modi is
learnt to have discussed the possibility of using B2B platforms to take organic
farm goods, handicrafts and products from SMEs to global buyers. According to
sources privy of the meeting, Ma too backed the model as it is seen to better
for the growth of SMEs.

During his
meeting with PM Modi in New Delhi, Jack Ma advised that India should focus more
on ‘Globalisation,’ rather than ‘Americanisation.’

According to
Bloomberg Billionaires Index, as of November 2014, 50-year-old tycoon Jack Ma is
the richest man in China and 18th richest man in the world with an estimated
net worth of $29.7 billion.

The e-commerce
giant’s founder has pledged to invest more in Asia’s third largest economy. This
is his second visit to the country in the last four months. The visit comes
just three months after Alibaba affiliate Ant Financial led a $575 million
round in mobile internet firm One97 Communications.

Alibaba’s entry
into India’s e-commerce sector was also among the talking points discussed.

On Monday, a
government tweet announced the Chinese billionaire had called on Modi. Also
present at the meeting was Amitabh Kant, secretary, department of industrial
policy and Promotion.

On Sunday, both
Modi and Jack Ma had attended the last rites of Lee Kuan Yew, Singapore’s first
prime minister, in that country.

According to the
Business Standard report, Jack Ma He is expected to meet Bhavish Aggarwal,
founder and chief executive of cab aggregator Ola. Last year, SoftBank, an
investor in Alibaba, had infused capital in Ola. Alibaba has also been in talks
with Snapdeal for possible fund investment, though valuation issues might have
stalled the talks.

According to the
report, Alibaba is seeking to invest in small new-age companies, adding that the
company was looking at long-term dividends from India’s growing e-commerce
market.

As of September
2014-end, Alibaba’s gross merchandise value (GMV) stood at $296 billion.
India’s e-commerce majors Flipkart and Snapdeal are aiming at GMVs of $8
billion and $10 billion, respectively, by the end of this year.

American
e-commerce giant Amazon had entered the Indian market in 2013, under a
marketplace model.

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