Jack Ma says Alibaba has zero tolerance on fake goods, quality counterfeits comments taken 'out of context'

Jack Ma says his counterfeit comments were taken out of context
Jack Ma says his counterfeit comments were taken out of context

Alibaba Group chairman Jack Ma has waded back in to the counterfeits debate, saying his comment that counterfeit goods were better than originals was taken out of context.

Fakes had no place on his e-commerce platforms, Chinese billionaire Ma said in an opinion piece published by The Wall Street Journal.

Ma's comment came after media reported remarks he made in a speech at Alibaba's headquarters in Hangzhou that "fake products today are of better quality and better price than the real names. They are exactly the [same] factories, exactly the same raw materials but they do not use the names."

His comments, which were viewed to having given legitimacy to the counterfeit industry, caused new uproar over what was already a sore topic for China's e-commerce giant.

Alibaba was snubbed recently by International Anti-Counterfeiting Coalition (IACC), which withdrew the company's month-old membership after a protest by other IACC members, who called Alibaba their "most dangerous and damaging adversary."

But Ma said in the WSJ that his recent comments about counterfeits were "taken out of context."

"What I shared with our investors last week was an observation: that the dynamics between some brands and their manufacturing partners, and brands and their customers, are shifting due to economic and technological developments, he wrote.

"What I said last week was that these trends may challenge the business model of some established brands. That's reality."

To read the full WSJ opinion piece, click here.

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