Ford, Alibaba Explore Strategic Alliance

December 07, 2017 at 6:55 AM

Ford Motor Co. has signed a development agreement with Chinese tech giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. to explore several potential strategic partnerships.

The three-year plan calls for Ford to work with Alibaba’s four business units: AliOS, Alibaba Cloud, Alimama and Tmall. Among the potential areas of collaboration are mobility services, connectivity, cloud computing, artificial intelligence, digital marketing and online sales.

The initial phase of the agreement will include a pilot study on digital marketing opportunities at various stages of the automotive ownership cycle, from pre-sales and test drives to leasing options. This could eventually result in Ford vehicles being sold on Alibaba's Tmall online retail platform.

Ford aims to grow its China revenue 50% by 2025 compared with this year. Earlier this week the carmaker announced plans to introduce 50 new vehicles in China during this period.