This week, Alibaba Group said it would leverage sustainable technology to support the Asian Games, which will take place in Hangzhou later this year.
In other news, financial services company Ant Group agreed this week to support America’s National Basketball Association to help Chinese fans stream NBA content.
Consumers in China are also flocking to the tropical paradise of Maldives, according to travel platform Fliggy, which reported a spurt in bookings following a visa-waiver agreement between the countries.
Alibaba Leverages Eco-Friendly Technology to Support Hangzhou Asian Games
Alibaba’s e-commerce know-how and cloud infrastructure will power the Asian Games Hangzhou 2022 and help the event roll out green initiatives.
By leveraging its digital prowess, the Hangzhou-headquartered platform company will encourage 1 billion consumers and tens of millions of businesses on its platforms to participate in what the event has labeled “the greenest” Asian Games yet.
The partnership is part of a push by the group’s cloud computing branch Alibaba Cloud to support large-scale events on the cloud, including the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022.
Alibaba has rolled out other innovations for the Asian Games Hangzhou 2022, including Premium Dingtalk for Sports, a special edition of Alibaba’s workplace communication platform DingTalk.
Ant Group Partners with NBA to Engage Chinese Fans
Ant Group said this week that it reached a strategic partnership with the NBA in China to create original content and provide customized consumer experiences for fans in China.
Under the partnership, basketball fans in China can access NBA video content on Alipay, Ant’s payment platform. The duo will also develop original video content, build joint membership and launch digital collectibles to engage with fans in China.
“Bringing NBA’s high-quality content and engaged content creators onto our platform is an important step for Alipay to embrace the content ecosystem as an open platform,” said Ni Xingjun, chief technology officer at Ant.
The partnership follows an earlier move by NBA China to connect with fan communities in the country. Last week, the organization launched an NBA channel on the payment platform, providing user-generated content from NBA China’s network of influencers and Alipay’s content creators.
Fliggy Promotes Maldives Travel After Visa Eased for Chinese Travelers
Alibaba’s travel service platform Fliggy launched a sales promotion for Chinese tourists to visit the Maldives following a visa-waiver agreement between the two countries last Friday.
Fliggy tripled the number of travel products available on the site this week, including all-inclusive bundles covering accommodations and round-trip flights.
Search volume for trips to the Maldives, a chain of 26 atolls in the Indian Ocean, leaped by 1000% on Fliggy within two hours of the waiver agreement coming into effect. Bookings in the country by platform users jumped 1500% year-on-year in the first two weeks of February.
Chinese passport holders can travel to Maldives on a 30-day visa-free basis for short-term purposes such as tourism, business, family visit and transit, according to the agreement.
Alibaba Tops Wall Street’s Profit Forecasts; Upbeat on Year Ahead
Alibaba’s third-quarter profits beat Wall Street’s forecasts by honing its operations against a challenging backdrop created by the coronavirus pandemic and fierce competition.
The platform company’s adjusted EBITA, a non-GAAP measurement, rose 16% year-over-year to RMB52.05 billion ($7.55 billion) in the quarter that ended Dec. 31, beating predictions compiled by Thomson of about RMB47 billion.
“During the past quarter, we continued to improve operating efficiency and cost optimization that resulted in robust profit growth,” said Alibaba’s Chief Financial Officer Toby Xu.
The platform company has topped quarterly profit forecasts consistently for the past year mainly by controlling costs, said sector analysts.
Read the full story here
AliViews: Alibaba’s CEO Daniel Zhang on Q3 Earnings
“This past quarter, our business and operations experienced significant challenges due to the rapid changes in the COVID situation during December,” Alibaba’s CEO Daniel Zhang said on an earnings call this week.
“Despite these challenges, we delivered double-digit year-on-year growth in our adjusted EBITA and free cash flow through effective business management, cost optimization and operating efficiency.”
Read his full remarks here