Jack Ma Wants to Buy Yahoo! What's the Marketing Plan, Now?

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Jack Ma Yun - Annual Meeting of the New Champi...Image by World Economic Forum via Flickr
How would you market your company if this was happening?

TechCrunch reports that at a conference in San Francisco, Jack Ma, CEO of China Yahoo! subsidiary Alibaba, revealed that he has a strong interest in buying Yahoo! and spinning off its core assets. Most likely this is to protect himself and to rescue an ailing company.

There is not much more to add to this story, other than to say that it now has legs, as they say in the news business.

About a week ago, a report at Hexun, a Chinese media site said that Ma was serious about at buying Yahoo!. The purchase would allow Ma more control over Alibaba and it would also enable him to take some of the core features of the Yahoo! e-commerce infrastructure and use it for his own venture, Alipay. The stories on the recent Alipay fiasco are many but in short, Ma took the liberty of using his interest in Alipay to spin that company off from Yahoo!. In fact, Yahoo! didn't know it was coming.

I think that there's a strong likelihood that social e-commerce is the next giant wave of building web companies in China. All the major social networks are doing something about it. Web companies in China are buying properties that they can tie onto the back of a social media camel, and they are whipping their networks into shape and building strong e-commerce capabilities.

So, you are Yahoo!. You have a very large Chinese suitor. What is your marketing and innovation plan for this content engine that was once the darling of the Internet world?

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