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China’s Alibaba eyes synergies with Greek companies in meetings in Athens

Executives from China’s e-commerce giant Alibaba presented the possibilities of synergies with Greek companies in a meeting with the management of the Athens Chamber of Tradesmen in Athens on Tuesday.

Rodrigo Cipriani Foresio, Country Manager for Italy, Spain and Greece, said the company is an ecosystem with various platforms either for B2B trade contacts or for B2C (business to customer) contacts. He said new Chinese consumers are increasingly turning their attention to products from the international market with an emphasis on quality, and that 430 million consumers and Alibaba customers are also waiting for Greek products and businesses.
Asked by a journalist about the cost of opening an e-shop on Alibaba, Foresio said it ranges between 500 and 10,000 dollars, while there’s an additional 1-5 percent commission.
On his side, Ioannis Chatzitheodosiou, the President of the Athens Chamber of Tradesmen, said the Chamber is preparing new actions to promote synergies with the tech giant adding they are necessary for large platforms such as Alibaba’s. “Synergies between small Greek businesses are necessary to include these products in large platforms of electronic commerce,” Chatzitheodosiou told journalists after the meeting.
As an example of the fragmented sectors in the country, he made a comparison between Italy and Greece, saying the former has 50 large olive mills nationwide while the latter has 2,500. “We should have collaborative partnerships to get, as much as possible, Greek businesses in large electronic platforms,” he added.
Alibaba executives are now meeting with Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs Dimitris Mardas at the foreign ministry, along with other government officials. After the end of the meeting, the company executives will present their aims and investment plans to the management of professional bodies, chambers and country liaison, at an event organized by the Foreign Ministry, in cooperation with the Athens Chamber of Tradesmen.
On Wednesday, an event is planned in a hotel in central Athens where Alibaba executives will meet with representatives of 160 Greek companies. Chatzitheodosiou also said talks are underway for another large e-commerce company to visit Greece.