Unilever China Forms Strategic Partnership With Alibaba Group to Enhance Consumer Reach Across China

The collaboration includes Alibaba’s Blue Star programme, which will help protect Unilever’s brand and combat counterfeit goods to protect consumers

Alibaba Group and Unilever China announced has entered into a strategic partnership that will enable Unilever to reach customers across China with unprecedented precision and effectiveness through Alibaba’s data-driven ecosystem. Key areas of collaboration include rural China penetration, cross-border e-commerce, consumer protection and Big Data.

“We are very pleased to amplify our partnership with an industry leader such as Unilever,” said Daniel Zhang, Chief Executive Officer of Alibaba Group. “We look forward to building on our success in sales over the years and taking the collaboration to the next level. Moving forward, Alibaba Group and Unilever will jointly innovate in Big Data analytics application, cross-border e-commerce, and supply chain management. In this rapidly changing business landscape, we are committed to continually provide greater value to merchants and better experiences to shoppers.”

This agreement is a major milestone for a partnership that started five years ago with a single Tmall store, which has since grown steadily on a solid foundation of mutual trust and success over the years.

Through this strategic partnership, Alibaba Group and Unilever China will work together to strengthen cooperation to expand distribution channels, especially for consumers in rural areas to enjoy more convenient access to Unilever products. Both companies will further develop cross-border ecommerce cooperation and make the Tmall Global Unilever store home to the richest selection of Unilever products from around the world.

The application of Big Data will also be expanded to optimise Unilever’s digital advertising strategy through Alimama, Alibaba’s online marketing business, and reach more consumers through online-offline retail integration. There will also be a deeper collaboration in Alibaba’s Blue Star programme, where each product is tagged with a unique QR code that allows the consumer to verify its authenticity and origin. This will help protect Unilever’s brand and combat counterfeit goods to protect the customer user experience. The collaboration will also see a development of innovations in supply chain management and offline distribution models.

“Alibaba has changed the shopping habit of Chinese consumers. Its mission is to make it easy to do business everywhere, and its vision is to build the future infrastructure of commerce. This meets the Unilever’s development needs in China,” said Marijn Van Tiggelen, Unilever North Asia President. “Alibaba is the leading internet company in China, with the most innovative thinking. It’s not only an online store, but also a solution platform for online payment, e-finance, and e-commerce logistics. In cooperation with Alibaba, Unilever can provide more convenient services to consumers in China.”