Global tech giant Alibaba.com has made its first serious entry into the sub-Saharan Africa market with a first Channel Partnership agreement with World Trade Centre Accra, a member of the Strategic Initiatives Limited Group.
Alibaba.com is the world’s leading B2B marketplace, offering a wholesale platform for millions of buyers and sellers around the world to transact business. It has always been possible to create an Alibaba.com account from Ghana and most countries worldwide for sourcing and purchasing products. However, the Alibaba.com platform has several features and tools for exporters (sellers), such as the Global Gold Supplier (GGS), Verified Seller Mark and Key Word Advertisement (KWA), which were not available to users in sub-Saharan Africa until now.
With the tools provided by Alibaba.com, SMEs and exporters can reach millions of new buyers worldwide. This is a potential game-changer for Ghana and Africa. The launch of Alibaba.com’s first channel partnership in sub-Saharan Africa in cooperation with Strategic Initiatives Limited and World Trade Centre Accra presents a unique pathway for Ghanaian companies to access new opportunities in the global market, with its accompanying benefits:
- Increased exports and foreign exchange earnings
- Job creation
- Poverty alleviation, and
- Inclusive economic growth
Alibaba.com’s B2B marketplace serves forty million buyers from more than 200 countries globally. The platform receives 400,000 (four hundred thousand) enquiries daily. The entry of Alibaba.com into Ghana will open a golden era of global business opportunities for Ghanaian SMEs, manufacturers and exporters. With Alibaba.com’s Request For Quote (RFQ) service, Ghanaian exporters no longer have to wait for buyers to find them. Alibaba.com receives 20,000 (twenty thousand) RFQs daily from serious global buyers, and generates data on in-demand products covering more than 5,000 (five thousand) industries daily. This means that Ghanaian exporters can be on the front-foot and receive information on buyers searching for products – and be able to contact them first.
Alibaba.com also provides critical support and training for SMEs and large corporates to build successful e-commerce business models. The training and capacity-building programmes conducted by Alibaba.com have helped prepare companies worldwide to enhance product and service offerings and gain access to global markets. These programmes now available in Ghana will build on the capacity of Ghanaian companies to enter new markets. Ghanaian companies can also directly participate in Alibaba.com’s groundbreaking online trade shows.
Potentially, the biggest winners of Alibaba.com’s entry into Ghana will be SMEs and large corporates operating in the Non-Traditional Export (NTE) space. This will undoubtedly provide a shot in the arm for the government of Ghana’s National Export Development Strategy (NEDS), which seeks to grow Ghana’s NTEs from US$2.8billion in 2020 to US$25.3billion by 2029. Other government initiatives such as the One District-One Factory (1D1F) initiative and YouStart programme could gain massively from a partnership with Alibaba.com.
By working closely together, government, industry players and the team at Strategic Initiatives Limited can leverage the benefits of Alibaba.com to position Ghana to take advantage of the new opportunities being availed by the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement.
The official launch of Alibaba.com in Ghana will be on the 12th of October, 2022 at the World Trade Centre Accra, and will be held alongside a two-day exhibition to showcase Ghana’s export potential. The launch is an open invitation for all stakeholders to engage with the Alibaba.com team on how to maximise potential gains for Ghana.