From Dimes to ‘Times’

What got Jack successful? A beautiful narrative by Duncan Clark of Jack Ma’s Global business built by Jack, backed by his consistency, persistency and hard work.

The book has detailed every phase of Alibaba, right from where it was just an idea to when it became a major part of Silicon Valley and Wall Street. Clark starts by describing the three “iron triangle” of Alibaba:

1. The E-commerce edge

2. The Logistics edge

3. The Finance edge

The business stood along these three pillars, each topic details the unparalled variety of goods to consumers, logistics offering ensures the goods are delivered quickly and reliably and company’s finance subsidiary ensures that buying on Alibaba is easy and worries free.

As a boy, Jack fell in love with the English language and hence, relished any opportunity to practice. Every morning from five o’clock he would read English in front of the Hangzhou hotel to greet foreign tourists, who came from USA, from Europe and then give them free tour of the West Lake. In return, they taught him English. Later at the age 24, Jack got his first job as an English professor in Hangzhou

University, which gave him huge exposure and opportunity to explore the outer world.

Jack first travelled to Seattle for work and he got excited about this new thing then, “Internet” he searched for “beer” and came across a lot of options from different cities and countries but didn’t find any information related to China. He got disturbed and hence, got this idea of bringing the Chinese market into the Internet and this was the beginning of creating of a multi-million business.

The book details every aspect of rising and shortcomings of Jack’s business. The ugly and messier fights with Yahoo, eBay, NetEase and others. And how he built an army of soldiers, in terms of his employees and customers. Jack is known as the king of the China market, his character is described as magical and charismatic.

The journey from earning ‘dimes’ to getting recognized in “Times” is what Duncan Clark takes us through. Jack is an icon for China’s booming private sector and the gatekeeper to hundreds of millions of middleclass consumers because for him his “customers comes first”.

Today, Jack is not only known as an entrepreneur but as a philanthropist too! He has invested millions and millions in giving back to the society.

I was completely hooked to the book from the beginning to the end, and felt this utter rush in my

adrenaline, feeling so motivated and innovative. Its true, nothing can stop you from achieving something once you set your heart upon it!

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