Jack Ma to launch Alibaba’s regional distribution hub in Malaysia

Ready to go?: Ma and Najib are expected to announce the plans at an event in Kuala Lumpur. — Reuters

KUALA LUMPUR: Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Limited plans to set up a regional distribution hub in Malaysia to cater to its fast-growing business in the region, two sources aware of the discussions said.

The hub would be sited within KLIA Aeropolis, a 24,700-acre development led by airport operator Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) that is expected to generate more than RM7bil worth of domestic and foreign investments.

Alibaba executive chairman Jack Ma and Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak are expected to announce the plans at an event in Kuala Lumpur this week, the sources said.

The hub will be set up with the help of Malaysian state-linked agencies. It was not clear whether Alibaba would invest any funds in the project.

“Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) has existing facility for Alibaba Group to pilot their distribution services here, and if (Alibaba) decide to expand in the future, there is the option to build more on other (undeveloped) sites in KLIA Aeropolis,” one source said.

Alibaba and the Malaysian prime minister’s office did not respond immediately to requests for comment.

Najib appointed Ma as his government’s digital economy adviser during an official trip to China in November.

Malaysian media reported that Ma, whose Alibaba owns Chinese online shopping business Taobao, would help steer Malaysia’s e-economy development with the implementation of online payment and banking.

“Many people see Malaysia as an emerging hub next to Singapore. Malaysia may not be able to take all of Singapore’s business but it is a good choice (logistically),” one source said.

This would mark Alibaba’s first investment in Malaysia. The company invested US$1bil (RM4.44bil) last year to control Singapore-based e-commerce platform Lazada, Southeast Asia’s largest online shopping platform. It also increased its shareholding in Singapore Post to 14.4% from the 10.2% acquired in 2014 and bought a 20-percent stake in Thai e-payment service, Ascend Money.

Ties between Malaysia and Beijing have blossomed in recent months with a surge of investments from China.

China agreed to buy assets of troubled state fund 1MDB for US$2.3bil (RM10.2bil) in December 2015.

Najib returned from November’s Beijing visit with 14 agreements amounting to US$34.4bil (RM152.5bil), which included an agreement to buy four Chinese naval vessels and collaboration to build rail projects in Malaysia.

Sources said the distribution hub would be part of Malaysia’s Digital Free Trade Zone (DFTZ), also slated to be launched during Ma’s visit next week.

“KLIA Aeropolis includes many components and the DFTZ is likely a new component to be added into the development,” one source said.

Plans to establish the DFTZ were announced in the national budget last October. —  Reuters

Source: Tech News | The Star Online

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特朗普赢得2016年美国总统大选后推出的政策,让很多人会因为经济环境的不确定变化因素,而感到茫然失措. 面对未知的经济挑战与考验,新创企业在模式上应持有热诚、敢于突破与创新的思维. 因此,趋势与变化,是作为新创业者在2017年不应忽视的”具体的处境”.

反对自由贸易与逆全球化政策变革这件事,如今在特朗普眼前面临的只有不可避免的冲突和分裂. 真正的变革是需要时间的沉淀才看得见成果与绩效. 目前特朗普上任带来的行政政策究竟会对世界经济带来的利与弊影响,仍是未知数.

美国一路来是科技产业的前辈, 也是最完善的电子经济体系. 马新两国正处在新创的起飞点, 认知到科技的力量, 是很重要的经济成长关键. 危机就是转机,我们处于最坏的时代,也身处最好的时代. 因此, 我认为未来全球将出现更多全新的转型商业模式, 也给予了新创业者更好的时机.

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Asia-Pacific Gateway 54Tbps subsea cable completes construction

NEC has announced the completion of the Asia-Pacific Gateway (APG) subsea cable between China, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam, and Singapore, which provides capacity of more than 54 terabits per second.

The APG fibre-optic submarine cable — owned by a consortium of telecommunications carriers including China’s China Telecom, China Unicom, and China Mobile; Japan’s NTT Communications; South Korea’s KT Corporation and LG Uplus; Singapore’s StarHub; Taiwan’s Chunghwa Telecom; Thailand’s CAT; Malaysia’s Global Transit Communications; and Vietnam’s Viettel and VNPT — stretches 10,900km across the region.

“NEC is honoured to have been selected as the supplier for APG,” Shunichiro Tejima, executive vice president and head of the Telecom Carrier Business Unit at NEC, said.

“We hope to see our partnership with the consortium further enhanced through NEC’s ability to provide real-time technical support for the operation and maintenance of this advanced submarine cable.”

Back in 2012, Facebook also invested an undisclosed amount into the APG in order to “help support our growth in South Asia, making it possible for us to provide a better user experience for a greater number of Facebook users in countries like India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Hong Kong, and Singapore”.

Telecommunications carriers and consortiums are racing to build out subsea cable capacity across the Asia-Pacific region, driven by the rapid increase in data usage globally.

Australia’s incumbent telco Telstra acquired a 36,000km cable network system connecting China, Japan, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and the Philippines as part of purchasing Pacnet for $697 million in December 2014, and is also involved in a number of submarine cable projects: In May, it announced the Bay of Bengal Gateway (BBG) 8,000km 100Gbps submarine cable system, made up of three fibre pairs, which will connect Singapore, Malaysia, India, Sri Lanka, Oman, and the United Arab Emirates.

Telstra, Singaporean telco Singtel, and Australian company SubPartners in March also entered a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to construct a high-capacity Perth-to-Singapore subsea cable. The cable, named APX-West, will be 4,500km long, with two fibre pairs providing a minimum of 10Tbps capacity each pair and two-way data transmission, expected to be complete by 2018.

In September, Nextgen and Alcatel-Lucent Submarine Networks activated the $139 million North West Cable System (NWCS), now owned by Vocus Communications, a 2,100km fibre-optic submarine cable between Darwin and Port Headland.

The Australia-Singapore Cable (ASC) project, also acquired by Vocus after originally being a AU$170 million 50-50 joint-venture deal between Vocus and Nextgen, involves constructing a 100Gbps 4,600km subsea cable connecting Perth to Singapore and Indonesia.

The AU$400 million Trident subsea cable, backed by Beijing Construction and Engineering Group with the support of the China Development Bank, will connect the west coast of Australia with Singapore via Indonesia, and is expected to be completed by the second quarter of 2018. It has a bandwidth of 28Tbps utilising 100Gbps coherent dense wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM) technology, which is upgradeable to 400Gbps.

In April, the 14,000km 30Tbps capacity Hawaiki Submarine Cable connecting Australia and New Zealand to Hawaii and the West Coast of the United States also commenced construction, with an expected completion date of mid-2018.

The “FASTER” 10,000km subsea cable system connecting Japan with the west coast of the United States, consisting of six fibre pairs and making use of 10Gbps wave technology, is also being built, as is the Southern Cross Cable Network between California and Sydney.

Source: ZDNet