Alibaba‘s CEO Jack Ma, the leading e-commerce site in China, made some waves by suggesting he might be buying the struggling US-site Yahoo. Serial entrepreneur Marc van der Chijs discusses on his weblog how Alibaba could use Yahoo to get into the US market.
Marc van de Chijs:
By buying Yahoo or taking a big stake in it, Alibaba can enter the US market. I think Alibaba wants to grow outside of its homebase of China, and this may be a great way to kickstart that. Alibaba was the reason that Ebay never succeeded in China, despite investing tons of resources. Now Alibaba wants to fight with Ebay on Ebay’s home turf. Jack Ma even announced that he plans to live in the US for a year, I don’t think he would do that just to buy a share in Yahoo.
But Alibaba likely can’t do it alone, even if it wants to buy Yahoo completely they probably can’t finance it. So they will need partners, and it seems both Silver Lake (a PE fund) and the Russian DST fund are joining Alibaba in a consortium. Seems like a good combination to get Yahoo back on track to me…
I think there will be a problem: The US government. I don’t think they will like a Chinese company to take control of one of America’s biggest online properties, with a huge database of emails and credit card details, plus one of the biggest search engines. It won’t be the first time they block a deal (think Huawei trying to buy 3Com), and I would not be surprised if a Alibaba/Yahoo deal would be blocked in the same way.
- The economic damage of internet filters – Marc van der Chijs (chinaspeakersbureau.info)
- The internet as my second brain – Marc van der Chijs (chinaspeakersbureau.info)
- Change in China and business – Marc van der Chijs (chinaspeakersbureau.info)
- Sharing the stage at Tudou’s IPO – Marc van der Chijs (chinaspeakersbureau.info)