Alibaba Group’s new CEO Eddie Wu has redefined the company’s strategic focus on two main themes, which include “User First” and “AI-driven”.
According to an internal letter to staff viewed by MARKETING-INTERACTIVE, Wu said one of the reasons behind the move is that traditional internet models becoming increasingly homogeneous and facing the competitive pressures of saturation, while new technologies such as AI are emerging as the new engine of global business growth.
“Alibaba must transform itself to find the key to the future, fulfil our mission of solving societal problems, serve small and medium-sized businesses, and contribute to our society as a positive force for good,” he added.
He said that the company will recalibrate its operations around these two core strategies and reshape its business priorities.
As part of the business transformation, Alibaba also looks to reinforce our strategic investments in three areas, including technology-driven internet platforms; AI-driven tech businesses; and a global commerce network.
To offer the best-in-class user experience, Wu said all of Alibaba’s businesses should operate from a user-first perspective and seek out the most open and collaborative relationships, even including with companies we traditionally consider as competitors.
“Accordingly, we will encourage business collaboration based on market principles as long as it does not affect strategic synergies,” he added.
To cope with the disruptions brought about by AI across all sectors, Wu said Alibaba must be determined to redefine the user-centric value proposition by transforming use cases into applications for AI technology, driving breakthrough user experience and business models through technology innovation.
Another area the company is looking to invest in is globalisation. Apart from just expanding its own business lines, Wu said globalisation is more about establishing a global commerce network with infrastructure and ecosystems to help more Chinese and global SMEs explore opportunities worldwide.
“Alibaba will continue to deepen our reorganisation efforts – we will adopt a more flexible and open governance system to strengthen independent decision-making in our businesses and support them to experiment with organisational structures and business logic tailored to their unique characteristics,” Wu further exclaimed.
Moving forward, Wu said the company will also focus on promoting young employees, especially those born after 1985 and 1990s to form the core of its business management teams within the next four years.
This comes days after the surprise exit of Alibaba Group’s former chief Daniel Zhang as head of the group’s cloud division. According to an internal letter viewed by MARKETING-INTERACTIVE, Joseph Tsai, Alibaba group chairman said Zhang expressed his wish to transition away from his role as chairman and CEO of Alibaba Cloud Intelligence Group.
Following careful consideration, the Alibaba board respected and accepted Zhang’s decision, and appointed Wu as acting chairman and CEO of Cloud Intelligence Group, effective immediately.