Salesforce links with Alibaba to lure Chinese clients

Will the Chinese tech giant help Salesforce to catch on in China?

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Salesforce links with Alibaba to lure Chinese clients

Alibaba will represent US customer relationship management platform Salesforce exclusively in the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan, according to the Chinese tech giant’s own news site Alizila.

The Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool that the company plans to sell include the Sales Cloud, Service Cloud, Commerce Cloud, and Salesforce platforms. The partnership also indicates that Salesforce will become the exclusive CRM for Alibaba.

“Alibaba is pleased to establish a strategic partnership with Salesforce, the world’s number one CRM,” said Ken Shen Tao, vice president of Alibaba Cloud Intelligence.

Alibaba’s strong and secure cloud infrastructure network and insight into the Chinese market would provide both parties with the best localized solutions for their global customers, added Ryan Aytay, Salesforce’s executive vice president of strategic partnerships.

Salesforce is the biggest CRM vendor in the world, with a 19.5% market share in 2018, while Alibaba is the largest digital commerce ecosystem and Infrastructure-as-a-Service actor in China.

According to research firm Gartner, by 2021, around 80% of companies marketing their products and services in China (paywall) will have to engage or partner with local Chinese companies and security firms to handle risk, security and privacy.

“As the leading cloud service provider in the Asia Pacific region, our cloud infrastructure and data intelligence platform combined with Salesforce’s market leading solutions for sales, service, commerce and more will provide global customers with incredible customer experiences at every touchpoint,” Shen Tao added.

Alibaba’s cloud business almost doubled its global market share to 7.7% in 2018, trailing only behind Amazon (47.8%) and Microsoft (15.5%), according to a Gartner report.

CRM is currently the fastest growing and the biggest enterprise software category, according to Gartner data.