Just today (June 18), Jack Ma, Alibaba founder and executive chairperson launched the first Alibaba office in Southeast Asia and it is located right here in Kuala Lumpur. The office will be located at the UOA corporate building in Bangsar South (aka Kampung Kerinchi). Chinese ambassador, Bai Tian was in attendance at the event as well.
Before the afternoon launch, Ma had met up with Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad in Perdana Putra and also our Finance Minister, Lim Guan Eng at an informal dinner yesterday (June 17). In the one-hour meeting that he had with Dr Mahathir, Ma said that they had a “very good meeting” while Dr Mahathir posted on Twitter, saying they had a “good exchange of ideas on a wide range of subjects”.
According to The Star, some of the topics they discussed include sharing of ideas and also how to lift more Malaysians out of poverty and support more young people and small businesses. Ma added that he was “surprised by (Dr Mahathir’s) knowledge about technology”. Yes, our PM is a very knowledgeable man!
It seems that Ma admires our PM a lot because during the launch of the new Alibaba office, Ma also revealed that he was actually inspired to create Alibaba because of Dr Mahathir. Wow! In his speech, Ma said that he was inspired by Dr Mahathir’s Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC), Malaysiakini reported.
He said that he had read about the MSC almost 20 years ago and that was when the first seed of an idea took place, which would eventually give birth to the globally recognised e-commerce giant.
“I was reading the newspaper (in 1997) and saw the news about the MSC. I thought, ‘wow, this is a genius idea’. (I thought) if Malaysia could do this, why can’t China. Why can’t I do this for myself? So Malaysia inspired me to create Alibaba,” he said.
Ma also assured that his company would remain committed to Malaysia and that they are planning on launching Malaysia Week in July, where they would promote all things Malaysia to China.
Looks like our seventh PM is one inspirational man that has certainly influenced Jack Ma!
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