Odds and Ends 

Alibaba to help Salesforce localize and sell in China

Salesforce, the 20-year-old leader in customer relationship management (CRM) tools, is making a foray into Asia by working with one of the country’s largest tech firms, Alibaba. Alibaba will be the exclusive provider of Salesforce to enterprise customers in mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan, and Salesforce will become the exclusive enterprise CRM software suite sold by Alibaba, the companies announced on Thursday. The Chinese internet has for years been dominated by consumer-facing services such as Tencent’s WeChat messenger and Alibaba’s Taobao marketplace, but enterprise software is starting to garner…

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Odds and Ends 

Amazon, Western Union debut PayCode to sell goods in emerging markets and let shoppers pay in cash

While Amazon has been methodical (read: a little slow) in launching local versions of its site for various global markets, it has now embarked on a secondary track to snag more business outside the 14 countries where it has built out full operations. Amazon has partnered with Western Union to set up a service called PayCode, which lets people shop and pay for Amazon items using local currencies that would not have been accepted on the site before, starting with services in 10 countries: Chile, Columbia, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Kenya,…

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Odds and Ends 

Still a year away from launch, Meg Whitman and Jeffrey Katzenbergs Quibi keeps adding talent

Video won’t start rolling on Meg Whitman and Jeffrey Katzenberg’s new bite-sized streaming service with the billion-dollar backing until the end of 2019, but talent keeps signing up to come along for their ride into the future of serialization. The latest marquee director to sign on the dotted line with Quibi is Catherine Hardwicke, who will be helming a story around the creation of an artificial intelligence with the working title “How They Made Her,” according to an announcement from Katzenberg onstage at the Variety Innovate summit. Whistle called “Benedict Men”…

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Lazada, Alibabas Southeast Asia e-commerce business, gets a new CEO

Alibaba has reshuffled the leadership at Lazada, its e-commerce firm in Southeast Asia, after CEO Lucy Peng — an original Alibaba co-founder — stepped down to be replaced by Lazada executive president Pierre Poignant after just nine months in the role. Alibaba owns more than 90 percent of Lazada but it has been involved in the business since April 2016 when it bought 51 percent of Lazada for $1 billion from Rocket Internet. It invested a further $1 billion last year to increase its equity to around 83 percent and earlier this year…

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Headlines 

Google, Alibaba Spar Over Timeline for ‘Quantum Supremacy’

Google’s quantum computing researchers have been planning a party—but new results from a competing team at China’s Alibaba may have postponed it. The China-America corporate rivalry on an obscure frontier of physics illustrates a growing contest between nations and companies hoping to create a new form of improbably powerful computer. In March, Google unveiled a chip called Bristlecone intended to set a computing milestone. It could, Google said, become the first quantum computing system to perform a calculation beyond the power of any conventional computer—a marker known as quantum supremacy.…

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Odds and Ends 

Alibaba smashes its Singles Day record once again as sales cross $25 billion

Alibaba has set another Single’s Day record after the e-commerce giant sold over $25 billion of product on the Chinese biggest online shopping date. The full number comes in at 163.8 billion RMB, that’s roughly $25.3 billion, in GMV — that’s “gross merchandise volume” which is used to measure a dollar value for all sales on a platform. In Alibaba’s case, that predominantly means its Taobao marketplace and Tmall brand store although it does offer sales via its international services and it ships worldwide. All told, Alibaba handled 1.48 Billion transactions during…

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Headlines 

Can Jack Ma, Asias richest man, create 1m jobs in the US?

The founder of Alibaba, one of the worlds biggest online retailers, made the promise at a pre-inauguration meeting with Donald Trump Jack Ma was destined to live an ordinary life. He failed the Chinese university entrance exam several times before being accepted by the worst school in Hangzhou, and he was rejected from a dozen jobs even selling chicken at KFC. Ma was ready to settle into a quiet lifeas an English teacher in eastern China, a position with few advancement prospects, when, during a trip to Seattle in 1995…

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