Africa Should Not Copy China’s Model, But be Africa – Jack Ma

Alibaba CEO Jack Ma gestures as he is introduced to participate in a panel discussion at the APEC CEO Summit in ManilaAlibaba CEO Jack Ma gestures as he is introduced to participate in a panel discussion at the APEC CEO Summit in Manila, Philippines, November 18, 2015. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
  • Africa Should Not Copy China’s Model, But be Africa – Jack Ma

Jack Ma, the founder and executive Chairman of the largest E-commerce website in the world, Alibaba, advised African young entrepreneurs to learn from developed nations and make necessary adjustments to avoid future mistakes, like air pollution in China.

In his lecture titled, “Empowering Young African Entrepreneurs,” Jack Ma said young African entrepreneurs should not copy China but learn from them and other top nations.

According to the billionaire, China emerged from the era of business-to-consumer, B2C, but the future would be about Consumers –consumer to business, C2B.

The entrepreneur who has created more than 33 million jobs in China alone and sold more than $500 billion in sales to date, said because of data technology every manufacturer would be C2B in the future.

“Growing data base would impact the way manufacturing companies approach business and shift the focus to consumers,” said Jack Ma.

Therefore, African businesses that copied China’s model might fail in the future.

However, globalization would help Africa sell to the world but first African entrepreneurs must move fast and leverage Africa’s unique comparative advantage for growth.

“Africa has much more opportunities because of its challenges and young enthusiastic population, therefore, young Africans must be the bridge to the future they desire.”

“Today you only sell in Nairobi, in the future if you can’t sell across Africa. Your business will die because 80-90 percent of all businesses will be online.”

The businessman launched a US$10 million African Young Entrepreneurs Fund to support African start-ups.

“This is my money, so I don’t have to get anybody’s approval,” said the man who has always complained about the danger of government’s bureaucratic nature to growth. “I want the fund to support African online businesses,” he added.

About the Author

Samed Olukoya
Samed Olukoya is the CEO/Founder of investorsking.com, a digital business media, with over 10 years' experience as a foreign exchange research analyst and trader. A graduate of University of East London, U.K. and a vivid financial markets analyst.

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