Aussie Bigcommerce Inks Deal With Alibaba

By Rory Betteridge | 23 Oct 2014

After its record-setting IPO Alibaba is putting its new capital to work, starting with a new deal in Australia.

Sydney based e-commerce platform Bigcommerce has just signed a deal with the Chinese juggernaut, to integrate the Australian platform and its 55,000 users worldwide with Alibaba’s vast network of suppliers and buyers throughout China, India, Thailand and the US.

“With this Alibaba partnership, we are helping our merchants grow their online businesses every step of the way — from sourcing to selling,” said Eddie Machaalani, Co-Founder and CEO of Bigcommerce in a press release yesterday. “Alibaba.com provides access to the world’s largest network of suppliers and manufacturers of goods that will help our merchants build their online presence and expand into new revenue opportunities.”

Part of the arrangement with Alibaba includes giving Bigcommerce users access to Alibaba’s supplier sourcing solution, AliSourcePro, which connects retailers with suppliers, potentially delivering quotes within 48 hours of the initial search.

“It’s a cross-promo deal,” Machaalani told Fairfax, commenting on the relatively small market in Australia making the prospect of a global . “We’re going to help our people within the Bigcommerce platform source products globally through Alibaba’s platform, and they’ll be promoting Bigcommerce to their merchants.”

Having processed over $5 billion in sales for a global retailer network of 55,000 (10,000 of which based in Australia), Bigcommerce has lofty aspirations of tackling US giant Amazon head-on, and the new deal with Alibaba is certainly a step in that direction.

“This deal is designed to democratise components of e-commerce,” Machaalani said. “What companies like Amazon do really well is source products based on its buying power at an incredibly low cost and that pushes small businesses out of the market. We want all our businesses across the world to be able to leverage off Alibaba’s platform to source products at a low cost as well.”

Alibaba has been investigating avenues into the Australian online retail market, building connections with local fulfilment services and online retail bodies earlier this year. This strategy for Australia joins other similar partnerships with regional bodies around the world and more direct strategies for other markets, such as the new subsidiary marketplace 11Main in the US and AliExpress‘ growing popularity in Russia and Brazil.

“We are partnering with Bigcommerce to make it easy for our customers to do business anywhere in the world,” said Michael Lee, director of Global Marketing and Business Development at Alibaba. “Alibaba and Bigcommerce together are building an integrated ecommerce ecosystem and helping to introduce more small and medium-sized merchants and online stores to the global market.”

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