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Published by:
London Business School (2020)
February 2019
18 pages
Data source:
Field research


In September 2018 Alibaba's co-founder and executive chairman, Jack Ma, announced his plans to step down from the USD420 billion Chinese internet company to pursue philanthropy in education. The case describes the evolution of Alibaba's corporate strategy from Chinese e-Commerce pioneer to a complex ecosystem that includes e-Commerce, logistics, financial services and infrastructure services; alongside the evolution of the firm's mission, values, corporate culture, philosophy and iconic leader, Jack Ma. The case was designed to accompany the documentary film about Alibaba, Crocodile on the Yangtze, which chronicles the early days of Alibaba through to its victorious battle with eBay in China.

Teaching and learning

This item is suitable for undergraduate, postgraduate and executive education courses.


Strategy & execution; Organizational behavior; Leadership


Geographical setting


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