Ma Yun, the founder of China's leading e-commerce company Alibaba, said Tuesday that he expects a Korean version of the company's online shopping platform Taobao. com to attract more South Korean consumers in future.
Ma Yun made the remarks during a speech at Seoul University in South Korea on Tuesday afternoon, on the sideline of the second China-South Korea Internet roundtable conference.
Asked whether Aalibaba has a plan to enter the South Korean market, Ma suggested South Korean young people who are interested in e-commerce translate Taobao's homepage into Korean language and operate on their sides to make a success.
Ma said it is very difficult for Alibaba to send people to and hire people in South Korea at present, but he believed that if South Korean people make a Korean version of Taobao, they will spark more love from domestic market towards Taobao and achieve success.
Ma mentioned Taobao's Russian version, which was created by some Russian girls studying in Beijing and quite popular among the young generation in Russia. Goods ordered on Russian Taobao are shipped from Beijing to Moscow and distributed there.
"It takes six months for people in Moscow to receive the goods, but they still love it," said Ma, noting that only love can make a business success.
"We don't believe that if we come to South Korea, we can serve the South Korean people better than South Korea's local company," said Ma.
Ma preferred encouraging local people to make their own success to hiring more local people in his company.
"In the next 10 to 20 years, most large companies will be very global and international, but today is too early. We don't have any confidence right now. So that's why we do not want to come earlier," said Ma.
Instead, Ma hoped more South Korean students could join in Alibaba's headquarters in China's Hangzhou for at least two to three years, gaining experiences and then going back to their country to "create their own business."
In China, most multinational and national shopping service providers operated by professional managers are forced by pressures from shareholders to expand revenues and profits and get more overseas market shares. That is why they are less successful than local ones who want to stay longer to serve customers better, Ma added.
"But for us, we believe customers No.1, employees No.2, shareholders No.3. We think shareholder is important, but we believe customer is more important," said Ma.