E-business Ecosystem and its Evolutionary Path: The Case of the Alibaba Group in China

Lihua Huang, Ganglan Hu, Xianghua Lu

Abstract


The rapid growth of online consumers and e-business websites in China has attracted a largenumber of organizations to participate in the e-business industry; many of them have gonethrough several stages of evolution and aggregations. The purpose of this study is to apply thebusiness ecosystem theory as the theoretical lens to explore the phenomenon of e-businessgrowth in China. The Alibaba Group was chosen as a case to demonstrate the process bywhich a typical e-business ecosystem got shaped, developed, and matured. Four stages in theevolution path of Alibaba’s ecosystem and their respective characteristics are identified. Thefindings are useful for understanding the development of e-business in china. Implications forresearchers and practitioners are discussed.

Keywords


E-business evolution; e-Marketplace; Business ecosystem; Alibaba Group

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Huang, L., Hu, G., Lu, X. (2009). " E-business Ecosystem and its Evolutionary Path: The Case of the Alibaba Group in China "Pacific Asia Journal of the Association for Information Systems, 1(4), pp.25-36.