Alibaba's Ma: Olympics deal will help fight counterfeiting

AP News
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Posted: Jan 19, 2017 9:42 AM
Alibaba's Ma: Olympics deal will help fight counterfeiting

DAVOS, Switzerland (AP) — Alibaba chief Jack Ma says he hopes a new accord with Olympics officials will help fight counterfeiting, as the e-commerce giant seeks to repair its image after being deemed a "notorious" market for fakes by the U.S. government.

The Chinese billionaire and International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach announced Thursday a partnership to run through 2028 in which Alibaba will support the $500 million Olympic Channel in China, among other things.

Ma said at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, that the partnership can help find out "exactly" who authorized vendors are. He said Alibaba has "the largest anti-counterfeit team in the world."

Bach said that having a centralized platform could help fight counterfeiting.

The U.S. Trade Representative last month said Alibaba's online marketplace Taobao sells many counterfeit goods.

Alibaba now has current sponsor deals with the IOC and FIFA, joining Coca-Cola, McDonalds and Visa as partners of both Switzerland-based organizations.

In December 2015, Alibaba E-Auto announced an eight-year deal to be title sponsor of FIFA's Club World Cup. That tournament is due to be revamped amid speculation future editions will be hosted in China.