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Alibaba overtakes Walmart as world’s largest retailer

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba said that it has officially become the world’s largest retail platform, with its total trading volume online in the fiscal year ending in March 2016 surpassing Walmart’s annual sales.

Alibaba has yet to announce the financial results for the last quarter of its fiscal year ending on 31 March, but in the statement to the US Securities and Exchange Commission makes it clear the company has outpaced Walmart that posted revenues of US$482.1 billion in the latest fiscal year.

The company also said the record-breaking GMV shows that the world’s largest retail marketplace has shifted from offline to online. “We used 13 years to demonstrate the power of a different business model compared with brick-and-mortar retailers.”

According to Alibaba, its online trading volume accounted for 10% of the overall retail volume in China and it directly generated 15 million jobs.

The comapny has already set a goal to achieve an annual trading volume of 6 trillion yuan by 2020 and help 90% of its retailers increase their operational efficiency.

“In 2024, we want to be a business platform serving 2 billion consumers and tens of millions of enterprises at home and abroad,” Zhang Yong, chief executive officer of Alibaba, said a recent press event.

The company will strive to combine cloud computing and big data technologies with the internet and the Internet of Things, as well as consumer terminal equipment, to spur its development, Zhang said.

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