Alibaba planning September push to attract Canadian businesses

By Mohammed Mestar

Alibaba is making big strides to convince Canadian businesses to sell via its platform.

The ecommerce giant this week announced Gateway Canada, a one-day event to be held in Toronto in September.

Over 500 Canadian companies will be educated on the growing thirst for their products from Chinese consumers, a market estimated to be worth $5tn. 

Jack Ma, Alibaba’s executive chairman and founder, is set to deliver a keynote speech that will extol the virtues of companies using his marketplace, which to date as facilitated US$500bn worth of sales.

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“Canada's high-quality products, fresh food and travel experiences are highly sought-after by China's large and growing middle class population who are looking online for the best products and experiences around the world,” said Ma. 

“Modern China has the potential to be a big opportunity for Canadian businesses of all sizes. At Gateway Canada in Toronto we will talk about the bright future of opportunity between China and Canada.”

More than 30 Canadian businesses already sell through Alibaba, such as vitamin maker Jamieson, juice and snack company Sun-Rype Products, Clearwater Seafoods.

Ecommerce accounts for 15% of China’s retail market, with 30% growth expected by 2020.

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