Joseph Tsai, Co-Founder and Executive Vice Chairman of Alibaba Group

Published on16 APR 2019
Builders & Innovators 2019

In this episode of Talks at GS, filmed at the Builders + Innovators Summit in Asia, Joseph Tsai discusses how Alibaba thinks about expanding its ecosystem of businesses beyond ecommerce and the opportunities of the digital economy from retail to cloud computing.

On the future of retail: “What needs to happen is digitization of everything, of all parts of [the] business, not just the online part. So, when a customer walks into a store, currently the retailer has no clue whether that same customer was in the store last week, and if they were, what they bought in the store, but with digitization of the digital footprint of the customer, you can know a lot about them. Then you can target your products to the customer whether they’re online or offline. That’s the whole process that’s happening.”     
On advice to entrepreneurs growing a business: “A company needs to have a mission besides making money…. You have to really define what problems you’re trying to solve. Is there a societal problem? Is there a customer problem that you’re trying to solve? That’s your mission, and you have to be laser-focused on it because as you scale or you go from 200 people to 2,000 people to 20,000 people, if not everybody is singing to the same tune, it’s very, very easy to get distracted.”

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