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Alibaba drives new deal with automotive giants

After announcing the establishment of its automotive division earlier this month, Chinese internet giant Alibaba Group has reached partnerships with several key automotive players.

Alibaba has signed a strategic partnership with Shanghai General Motors, a joint venture between General Motors and Chinese automobile company SAIC Motor, to expand the cooperation in the areas of car financing, big data marketing, O2O after-market services and used car replacement.

Under the terms of agreement, the two parties will develop car financing credit products to allow consumers to get credit for loans and purchase Shanghai GM vehicles online without commission, as well as allowing users to book service appointments and buy car replacement parts with authorised dealerships online.

The group has also established collaborative relationships with BMW MINI and Jaguar Land Rover. Alibaba’s Tmall.com platform will become the main e-commerce platform for MINI online car sales in China, while Alibaba Automotive and Jaguar Land Rover will collaborate on big data research and e-commerce initiatives aimed at providing efficient and convenient customer service.

Licheng Wang, general manager of Alibaba Automotive division, said it is a win-win proposition as the partnerships provide users with a rich array of services and a complete online auto value chain.

“By working with valuable partners, Alibaba is able to strengthen our O2O presence thus helping raise the bar on customer service in the industry.”

“This gives users’ confidence and convenience when purchasing cars or car parts on Tmall.com, and helps car brands keep consumers in their ecosystem.”

Alibaba said its automotive division has partnerships with nearly 50 car brands, 10,000 car dealerships in China and serves 60 million car owners through the Tmall car vertical (car.tmall.com). In 2014, 120,000 cars were sold through Tmall.com.

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