Alibaba Group, a Chinese e-commerce company operating international and domestic online marketplaces, announced earlier that they plan to invest $1 billion (on top of investments already made) into its cloud-computing unit Aliyun. This investment will be used to expand Aliyun into other international markets. It currently has data centers in China, Hong Kong, and Silicon Valley.
Their plan is to target the markets in Europe, Singapore, Japan, and the Middle East, where they recently formed a joint venture with Dubai-based holdings company Meraas.
Along with the investment announcement, Aliyun also stated that they formed a new partnership with Yonyou Software, which claims to be the largest software vendor in China. This partnership will help Aliyun score more enterprise consumers in need of cloud computing, big data, digital marketing, and e-commerce solutions all throughout Asia.
Another component of global expansion is Aliyun’s Marketplace Alliance Program, which is designed to reach new clients in North America, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East through partnerships with tech companies. Examples of such partnerships include Intel, Singtel, PCCW, LINKBYNET, and Towngas.
Amazon Web Services is a direct competitor of Aliyun. A backing from Alibaba allows Aliyun to experiment with different technologies that could help save them money as they deploy a new infrastructure.
Aliyun is proof of Alibaba’s scope of being more than just an e-commerce company. They have powered projects like the first “cloud hospital” in China. If these ventures are successful, Alibaba and its units will hold stakes in almost every aspect of daily Chinese life.
Alibaba CEO Daniel Zhang has said that “Aliyun has become a world-class computing service platform that is the market leader in China… This $1 billion investment is just the beginning; our hope is for Aliyun to continually empower customers and partners with new capabilities, and help companies upgrade their basic infrastructure.”
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