Alibaba Group president Michael Evans and global managing director K. Guru Gowrappan recently met Tata Group chairman Cyrus Mistry to discuss a partnership to cater to the online retail market in India.
The Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba approached Tata Sons for partnership as it had plans for development projects in the country’s rapidly growing online retail market.
According to sources, both companies discussed and covered areas such as logistics, offline stores and omni-channel to support Alibaba’s core e-commerce business.
“We have been exploring very carefully the ecommerce opportunity in this country, which we think is very exciting against the backdrop of Digital India,” A Tata Sons spokesperson said at an event in Delhi.
To put things in perspective, Alibaba sold goods worth USD 377 billion in 2015, compared with around USD 16 billion by all of India’s e-commerce companies put together, according to Morgan Stanley.
Tata Group, a salt-to-steel conglomerate with combined sales of USD 108.78 billion, has been associated with several other consumer brands in the country. The biggest coffee chain Starbucks also entered India through an alliance with Tata Global Beverages.