The annual transaction volume for China’s online retailer Alibaba in 2012 exceeded one trillion yuan (160.6 billion U.S. dollars) by Friday, announced Shao Xiaofeng, secretary-general of Alibaba Group, on Monday in Hangzhou, eastern Zhejiang Province.
The figure has made Alibaba the world’s second largest retail platform, just below Wal-Mart.
Shao officially announced Alibaba’s achievement at a press conference, saying that the combined annual transaction volume of Taobao and Tmall, both affiliates of Alibaba, have exceeded one trillion yuan at 21:50, Friday.
“E-commerce today has gone from quantitative change to the qualitative change, through decades of joint efforts from countless online retailers, e-commerce practitioners, and customers, signifying the upcoming of a new economic model,” said Shao Xiaofeng.
According to the National Bureau of Statistics figures, the total retail sales of consumer goods nationwide in China in 2011 was 18.39 trillion yuan, and four provinces had overall retail sales exceeding one trillion yuan, which includes Guangdong, Shandong, Jiangsu Province and Zhejiang.
E-commerce in China has witnessed significant breakthroughs in recent years. The transaction volume of Taobao, an online retail website affiliated with Alibaba, only reached 22.71 million yuan in 2003. In 2004, the figure shot up to a billion. And on Nov 11, 2012 (11-11 Singles Day in Chinese pop culture), the transaction volume of Taobao and Tmall reached 19.1 billion yuan in just one day.
According to Shao, the achievement reflects the great potential of E-commerce in China.
“Our platform has already reached third and fourth tier cities, reaching every corner of the villages. This is to tap into consumer demands in those cities. Through the 19.1-billion achievement, we managed to get a glimpse of the huge potential in China. Now we need to consider how to uncover the demand potentials not just from sales and promotions,” added Shao.
According to statistics released by CNNIC, the number of netizens has reached 538 million and Internet Penetration has reached 39.9 percent in China. The recent transaction figure is evidence that e-commerce has become a mature business model from a burgeoning trade pattern.
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