Alibaba has appointed managers to its UK and Italian offices, to help companies expand into China
Former Wal-Mart and Staples U.K executive, Amee Chande will head the London office which will serve as Alibaba’s European hub.
Rodrigo Cipriani Foresio, previous chief executive of the online imported Italian food store Buonitalia, will head the office in Milan.
According to CNBC, Alibaba hopes to become the gateway to China for European companies selling on numerous platforms. It said the European offices would help with inbound and outbound logistics and facilitate payments for Chinese customers and tourists.
Michael Evans, president of Alibaba group, said: “Chinese consumers are looking for quality, authentic international products and global brands. Europe is a logical first step with its diverse range of unique brands and high-quality products.”
This announcements comes just after Jack Ma, Alibaba’s founder, was appointed as business advisor to Prime Minister David Cameron.
A spokesperson for Cameron said that Jack Ma’s role will be to “provide particular help and advice on how to get small and medium-sized British businesses boosting their exports and in particular accessing Chinese markets through platforms like Alibaba.”
The company’s move also coincides with a visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping, as the UK looks to forge closer economic ties with the world’s second largest economy.