China's top e-commerce firm, Alibaba, is launching a $15 billion drive to build overseas research hubs to compete in e-commerce, logistics, and cloud technology. Fred Katayama reports.
Chinese e-commerce giant, Alibaba, is shelling out $15 billion to build eight research hubs around the world. The centers will be based in China, Israel, Russia, Singapore and the United States. Alibaba will hire 100 people to work on artificial intelligence, quantum computing, and fintech. The goal is to beef up its e-commerce, logistics and cloud technology. Krane Funds chief investment officer Brendan Ahern. (SOUNDBITE) BRENDAN AHERN, CHIEF INVESTMENT OFFICER, KRANE FUNDS ADVISORS (ENGLISH) SAYING: "Alibaba, ultimately, is at the epicenter of Chinese Internet and the e-commerce, which is a confluence of all things within the technology ecosystem. If it's big data, internet security internet of things, artificial intelligence. Ali Baba sees how that's taking place in China. It's not happening here in the United States nor in Europe, but it's happening in China. And they see that becoming a global phenomenon. So, setting up this global academic network allows them to pull the greatest minds, students, professors to bring with what's happening in China to a global audience." Alibaba has been growing very quickly. Since 2016, it has launched data centers in countries such as Australia, Japan, and Indonesia. The company is building a war chest to better compete with Amazon, as well as global payments, cloud and logistics firms.