The Alibaba Group and ISPO, a leading sports-focused network for professionals and consumer experts, announced that they are exploring joint strategic cooperation.
As part of the initiative, Alibaba intends to support the ISPO network by digitizing its services, particularly those aimed at the Chinese market. The contemplated cooperation will enable over 4,000 international ISPO customers from all over the world who want to expand their e-commerce business into China to learn about the Chinese consumer market and how to work with Alibaba’s e-marketplace Tmall.
ISPO China will be working closely with Alibaba teams in China to strengthen its presence in China’s sports and outdoor sector. The ISPO brand incorporates an integrated offering which offers both analogue and digital services including the world’s largest multi-segment trade fairs ISPO Munich, ISPO Beijing and ISPO Shanghai.
Tobias Gröber, Executive Director Business Unit Consumer Goods Messe München and Director ISPO Group, says, “With Alibaba’s Tmall B2C platform, the ISPO Group will gain a new, powerful and forward-looking partner. The cooperation will be a great opportunity for our customers to participate in one of the fastest-growing markets in the sports industry.”
Tmall enables international brands who want to enter the Chinese consumer market access to the over 488 million annual active consumers on Alibaba’s platforms, which is especially attractive for brands without a physical presence in China. ISPO members will benefit from a faster enrollment process for opening a Tmail store.
“We see a huge potential for international sports brands in China, as the growing Chinese middle class wants to spend their disposable income not just on products but also increasingly for experiences. Demand for high-quality sports equipment and fashion is massively growing in China. This is why the planned cooperation with ISPO is a fantastic opportunity for sports brands who want to reach a new consumer market,” commented Karl Wehner, Managing Director, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Turkey and Eastern Europe, Alibaba Group.
In 2019, ISPO and Tmall also aim to explore potential new retail cooperation to upgrade the traditional exhibition with innovative technologies for providing digitalized experience to both retailers and consumers.