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The Chinese entrance exams are held only once a year and Ma took three years to pass. In 2007, he even managed to beat his fiercest competitor, eBay, which had far greater financial muscle than Ma’s company. As a teenager, he started communicating with foreign tourists to enhance his English skills. He is the co-founder and former executive chairman of Alibaba Group, a multinational technology conglomerate. He was immediately smitten and intuitively recognized the role the internet would play in years to come. [11], As of July 2020, with a net worth of $48.2 billion, Ma is the second-wealthiest person in China (after Ma Huateng), as well as one of the wealthiest people in the world, ranked 20th by Forbes. Many of the people he spoke to were wary. In November 2012, Alibaba's online transaction volume exceeded one trillion yuan. Ma, the flamboyant co-founder of Alibaba and Ant, has all but vanished from public view since Ant’s initial public offering got derailed last month. China kicked off an investigation into alleged monopolistic practices at Alibaba Group Holding, escalating scrutiny over Jack Ma’s internet empire. In October 1999 and January 2000, Alibaba twice won a total of a $25 million foreign venture capital investment. Oct 3, 2014, 02:36 IST. Ma is a strong proponent of an open and market-driven economy. Over the next few years, Ma repeatedly changed his business model—combining experimentation with perseverance. "[64], On 24 September 2014, in an interview with Taobao, Ma attributed the strength of American society to its Christian heritage, and expressed his belief in the importance for China to implement a positive value system, in order to overcome the legacy of the Cultural Revolution. He started off by improving his communication skills and also learned English. He asked them to send him information about their companies, which he translated into English and sent by post to Seattle, where the websites were actually created. The program was expected to improve the domestic e-commerce market and perfect an e-commerce platform for Chinese enterprises, especially small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), to address World Trade Organization (WTO) challenges. My books on the psychology of success and wealth have been translated into a host of languages and have enjoyed notable success in China, India and South Korea. Suggested Reading : 10 Mind Blowing Lessons We Learned From Elon Musk on Success. He was an avid reader of Mark Twain and used every opportunity to get better at English. But, much like Bloomberg, the Google founders and so many other successful company founders, Jack Ma did not have a business plan. [70][71] At the same time, Ma expressed skepticism that AI could ever completely replace people, referencing to his theory that success requires a "love quotient" and stating that machines can never match this success. Jack Ma, or Ma Yun[a] (Chinese: 马云; [mà y̌n]; born 10 September 1964), is a Chinese business magnate, investor and philanthropist. [7][8][9][10], In 2019, Forbes named Ma in its list of "Asia's 2019 Heroes of Philanthropy" and awarded him the Malcolm S. Forbes Lifetime Achievement Award for his work supporting underprivileged communities in China, Africa, Australia, and the Middle East. If there is a man who knows the meaning of failure, it is Jack Ma. The psychology of success and wealth and the power of capitalism. Within three years, the company had made 5,000,000 Chinese yuan which at the time was equivalent to US$800,000. You may opt-out by. I started my career at the Central Institute for Social Sciences Research at the Free University of Berlin and went on to become department head at one of Germany’s leading daily newspapers, Die Welt. Jack Ma, who first started as a website designer and then went into business-to-business e-commerce, continued to develop his business in new directions. We buy and sell, ourselves. He performed part of "Can You Feel The Love Tonight" at the 2009 Alibaba birthday event while dressed as a heavy metal lead singer. So he and his friend created an "ugly" website related to China. He tried again, and this time he scored 19 out of 120. In 2014, he was ranked as the 30th-most-powerful person in the world in an annual ranking published by. His English was improving constantly, but he was so weak in math that he failed the standardized university entrance test—he only achieved one out of 120 possible points. He also tried to search for general information about China and again was surprised to find none. I was the only guy...".[19]. Aged 12, he had an idea of how he could improve his English skills: Every morning at five o’clock he rode his bicycle for 40 minutes to an international hotel in his hometown and waited there for tourists. The company’s office consisted of a single room with a workstation and a very old PC in the middle. What Jack Ma says is confirmed by entrepreneurial research: entrepreneurial success is not the result of explicit, academic learning and book knowledge–it is the product of implicit learning processes that manifest themselves in intuition and gut feeling. He happily shares his failures with the audience to reinforce the point he was no different to us when he started out When you tell your stories authentically and share the things you have learnt, you’ll build an emotional connection with people and develop a relationship with them. Still, he persevered and eventually managed to get into Teachers’ College—although he admits that it was the least respected university in his city. The English teacher turned internet entrepreneur is the country’s richest person. Given such circumstances, anyone else would have given up on the idea of setting up an internet company in such circumstances. In early 1995, he went to the US with his friends, who helped introduce him to the Internet. Ma began building websites for Chinese companies with the help of friends in the US. His zeal to enhance his aptitude and acquire new skills was evident from childhood. In 2000, I founded my own company, which I established as the market leader in the field of communication consultancy for real estate companies in Germany, with a roster of clients that included Ernst & Young Real Estate, CBRE and Jamestown. “We don’t really have a clearly defined business model yet,” he conceded. [30], Ma announced on 10 September 2018 that he would step down as executive chairman of Alibaba Group Holding in the coming year. All I know about computers is how to send and receive email and browse.”. New Delhi, Dec 27 (IANS) The ugly face-off between Chinese President Xi Jinping and billionaire entrepreneur Jack Ma is set to deal a big blow to investments in the country. Intuition Is More Important Than Book Knowledge, Jack Ma’s example shows that entrepreneurial intuition and, above all, the willingness to be open to new ideas, and to always be ready to adapt a business model, are much more important than book knowledge of the kind taught in business administration courses around the world. His motto was: “If you plan, you lose. He said that "The day we got connected to the Web, I invited friends and TV people over to my house", and on a very slow dial-up connection, "we waited three and a half hours and got half a page", he recalled. In April 1995, Ma and He Yibing (a computer teacher) opened the first office for China Pages, and Ma started their second company. The dynamic is shifting as the companies have grown in power. Jack Ma, originally Ma Yun, (born September 10, 1964, Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, China), Chinese entrepeneur who was head of the Alibaba Group, which comprised several of China’s most popular Web sites, including the business-to-business marketplace Alibaba.com and the shopping site Taobao.com. In October 2017, Ma was given an honorary degree of Doctor of Science in Technopreneurship from, In May 2018, Ma received an honorary doctorate from professors Yaakov Frenkel and Yaron Oz at the, In May 2019, Ma and other 16 influential global figures were appointed by, This page was last edited on 25 December 2020, at 07:47. [75] In 2009 Jack Ma became a trustee of The Nature Conservancy's China program, and in 2010 he joined the global Board of Directors of the organization. [66][67][68], Ma received international criticism after he publicly endorsed the Chinese work practice known as the 996 working hour system. In 2013, he became chairman of the board for The Nature Conservancy's China Program; this was one day after he stepped down from Alibaba as company CEO. But Jack Ma was right. [7][13], In 2020, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Alibaba Foundation and Jack Ma Foundation launched various initiatives, some of which involved donating medical supplies to the United States as well as various countries in Asia, Africa, and Europe. I sold the company in 2016 and have focused on academic research and writing books ever since. He was an avid reader of Mark Twain and used every opportunity to get better at English. In 1994, Ma heard about the Internet and also started his first company,[20] Hangzhou Haibo Translation Agency. Jack Ma is a Chinese businessman, investor, and philanthropist. However, this is not something irrational or mystical; it is accumulated experience, which in turn is the result of a combination of perseverance and the willingness to experiment. I was awarded my first doctorate in history in 1986 and my second, this time in sociology, in 2016. Jack Ma Makes Ant Offer to Placate Chinese Regulators Trying to salvage his relationship with regulators in a Nov. 2 meeting, the Chinese billionaire said he was ready to … [77][78] During the same year, the company funded the rebuilding of 1,000 houses damaged by the earthquake-hit in Nepal, and raised money for another 9,000. His very public rebuke is instead a warning Beijing has lost patience with the outsize power of its technology moguls, increasingly perceived as a threat to the political and financial stability President Xi Jinping prizes most. [82][83][84], China International Electronic Commerce Center, Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Alibaba Hong Kong Young Entrepreneurs Foundation, "Alibaba's Jack Ma is a Communist Party member, China state paper reveals", "China will struggle to produce another Jack Ma", "How Jack Ma became the role model for startup generation", "Jack Ma Outlines Bold Vision For His Philanthropy Foundation", "China's richest man Jack Ma to stand down from Alibaba", "Billionaire Jack Ma prepares for life after Alibaba. © 2020 Forbes Media LLC. The often-outspoken Jack Ma, Alibaba's founder, recently paid a high price for another public jab at regulators. Jack Ma -- born Ma Yun -- was born on October 15, 1964, in Hangzhou, located in the southeastern part of China. Jack Ma was born in 1964. A former English teacher, Jack Ma cofounded Alibaba Group, one of the world's largest e-commerce businesses. [15][16] While at school, Ma was head of the student council. I proved the Internet existed". Jack Ma and other entrepreneurs prospered under Beijing’s laissez-faire attitude toward the business side of the internet. [36], In 2017, Ma made his acting debut with his first kung fu short film Gong Shou Dao. He also claims to have applied ten times to Harvard Business School and got rejected each time. [61][62][63], At the annual general meeting of shareholders for Alibaba.com in May 2010, Ma announced Alibaba Group would begin in 2010 to earmark 0.3% of annual revenue to environmental protection, particularly on water- and air-quality improvement projects. The Inspiring Life Story Of Alibaba Founder Jack Ma, Now The Richest Man In China. In September 2014 it was reported Alibaba was raising over $25 billion in an initial public offering (IPO) on the New York Stock Exchange. In a lecture, Ma said: “It is not necessary to study an MBA. Although he found information related to beer from many countries, he was surprised to find none from China. [5] In 2017, Ma was ranked second in the annual "World's 50 Greatest Leaders" list by Fortune. The fact that he actually managed to find companies in his hometown who were willing to spend the not insignificant sum of 20,000 renminbi (about $2,400) on their new homepages is testament to his enormous persuasiveness. Jack Ma, or Ma Yun , is a Chinese business magnate, investor and philanthropist. Jack Ma, the founder of the e-commerce empire Alibaba and a stakeholder at Alipay, is the richest man in China with an estimated net worth of $38.3 Billion. Should the company really open a new front before it had won the business-to-business battle? If you don’t plan, you win.”. We want to be number one in the world.” He was so convinced of his future success that he even had a meeting filmed in his modest apartment in February 1999—to document the moment for his company’s later history. Jack Ma, The Alibaba CEO Story Jack Ma was the second child in the family Jack and his two siblings and elder brother and a younger sister had a modest upbringing during their childhood. Things were by no means easy at first. [24] He started a new round of venture development with 500,000 yuan. His parents were musicians and sometime storytellers. Ma often tells the story of his many failures trying to find a job. Forbes Favorites 2020: The Year’s Best Leadership Stories, These Crisis Management New Year’s Resolutions Are For Every Business Leader, Looking Ahead To 2021 And The Upside Of Being Grounded, The Selfless Dedication Of In-Home Caregivers, The Vaccination Rollout Will Only Work If It's Driven By Technology, Lowest Population Growth In Over A Century Means Tighter Labor Market For Business. Plus, at this time, it was proving increasingly difficult to raise new funds from venture capital companies. “If you consider Yahoo! Jack Ma Achievements. That's the transformation we are aiming to make. "We drank, watched TV and played cards, waiting. After all, Alibaba’s business-to-business operations were not yet turning a profit. It’s a funny thing. Even after he started Alibaba, he suffered multiple … But Jack Ma was different. Jack Ma isn’t on the verge of a personal downfall, those familiar with the situation have said. [80][81], Ma was born to a family of limited means. He would show them around the city as a travel guide and they would teach him English in return. One day he met an Australian family and soon became friends with them. Jack Ma was born in 1964. "We don’t want to be number one in China. Jack Ma has made an incredible life for himself. He was sitting in a coffee place in San Francisco and asked the waiter: Do you know who Alibaba is?. “I was treated like a con man for three years,” is how Jack Ma remembers those early days. In 1999, Ma quit his job and went back to Hangzhou to create Alibaba along with 17 friends.In 2006, Ma told the story of how he came up with the name Alibaba. [12] In 2019, Forbes named Ma in its list of "Asia's 2019 Heroes of Philanthropy" for his work supporting underprivileged communities in China, Africa, Australia, and the Middle East. Here’s the story of Jack Ma, the richest man in China and, with about $35 billion in assets, one of the richest people in the world. [6] In September 2018, he announced that he would retire from Alibaba and pursue educational work, philanthropy, and environmental causes;[7][8][9][10] the following year, Daniel Zhang succeeded him as executive chairman. Ma is a strong proponent of an open and market-driven economy. [4] He also serves as a role model for startup businesses. [65], In November 2018, the People's Daily identified Ma as a member of the Communist Party of China, something which surprised observers. The biggest problem was that it was not possible to access the internet in his hometown of Hangzhou at that time. “I was trained to be a high school teacher. He has an older brother and a younger sister. Jack Ma was born in 1964. AP Images. After the rapid rise of Taobao, eBay offered to purchase the company. Once a poor lad who survived by guiding tourists, Jack went on to rise above his humble condition and achieve success. Madeline Stone,Jillian D'Onfro. Unfortunately, the investors had a hard time understanding Ma’s approach. [14], Later in his youth, Ma struggled attending college. Jack Ma, the now-retired founder of Alibaba The natural inclination, when considering the upward arcs of Alibaba and Amazon, is to compare the men who founded them. He came from a humble background and has grown to become one of the wealthiest billionaires in the world. So what does it take? Communism was at its peak in the country and the residents … We had two rooms full of things we bought for no use, all garbage, for the first two weeks—in order to tell people that it works.”, From the outset he thought big and set himself very ambitious goals. [35], In November 2020, The Wall Street Journal reported that Chinese Communist Party leader Xi Jinping personally scuttled Jack Ma’s Ant Group IPO. The investors he met expected him to present a fully developed business plan. ", "Yahoo and Alibaba Resolve Alipay Dispute", "Jack Ma Is the Loneliest Billionaire in China", "Jack Ma leaves SoftBank board after 13 years", "China's Alibaba Group to "mobilize hundreds of millions" for environment", "Putin Vs. Obama: The World's Most Powerful People 2014", "Asian Awards 2015: All the winners from the star-studded bash - 3am & Mirror Online", "Alibaba's Jack Ma ranked No 3 in global tech innovation visionary survey by KPMG", "Chinese billionaire Jack Ma 'extremely humbled' by honorary degree from DLSU", "HKU to confer honorary degrees upon three outstanding individuals at the 199th Congregation - Press Releases", "Jack Ma, founder of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, receives honorable doctoral degree in 2013", "Secretary-General Appoints New Sustainable Development Goals Advocates", "Alibaba's Jack Ma: From 'crazy' to China's richest man", "Five Buddhist business leaders: From Alibaba co-founder to eBay's creator", "THOUGHTS ON CHRISTIANITY AND AMERICA'S FOUNDING", "It's Official: China's E-Commerce King is a Communist", "Alibaba's Jack Ma identified as member of China's Communist Party", "Jack Ma endorses China's controversial 12 hours a day, 6 days a week work culture", "Elon Musk and Jack Ma face off over AI in Shanghai", "Jack Ma: A.I. Alibaba Founder “Jack Ma Success Story” is truly inspiring for young entrepreneurs. “I flunked my exam for university two times before I was accepted by what was considered my city's worst university, Hangzhou Teachers University. During the small meeting, he posed the question: “In the next five or ten years, what will Alibaba become?” Answering his own question, he said that “our competitors are not in China, but in Silicon Valley … We should position Alibaba as an international website.”, Ma tried to raise money from venture capitalists in Palo Alto, Silicon Valley. [33] Daniel Zhang would then lead the way ahead for Alibaba as the current executive chairman. In 2011, it was announced that one of his companies had gained control of Alipay, formerly a subsidiary of Alibaba Group, so as to "comply with Chinese law governing payment companies in order to secure a license to continue operating Alipay. But I was so proud. A trip to Seattle in 1995, where a friend showed him the internet for the first time, proved to be decisive in shaping his future. In the same year, he also participated in a singing festival and performed dances during Alibaba's 18th-anniversary party. Numerous analysts reported that Ma sold Alipay to himself below, Ma was awarded an honorary doctoral degree by the. Jack Ma's Alibaba investigated over alleged anti-monopolistic practices, while Ant Group is being urged to implement stricter financial regulations. In 1988, he obtained a bachelor’s degree in English and found a job as an English teacher. Ma attended Hangzhou Teacher's Institute (currently known as Hangzhou Normal University) and graduated in 1988 with a Bachelor of Arts in English. … When he approached them, he proposed a deal. We bought everything they sell. Because schools teach knowledge, while starting business requires wisdom. He had spent almost all of his money on registering the company and had little left for anything else. Twenty-four people went for the job. In 2004, Ma went on to found Alipay, the world’s largest internet payment service. However, Ma rejected their offer, instead gathering support from Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang with a $1 billion investment. He entered the Hangzhou Normal University and completed graduation in English. could give us 12-hour work weeks", "Elon Musk and Jack Ma disagree about AI's threat", "Here's what leaders can do to feel secure in the automation age", "Billionaire Jack Ma Prepares for Life After Alibaba", "Chinese Earthquake -- Corporate Aid Tracker", "Alibaba Group Backs Young Hong Kong Entrepreneurs", "Alibaba To Establish $129M Hong Kong Young Entrepreneurs Foundation", "Alibaba's Jack Ma Joins Nepali Billionaire Binod Chaudhary's Rebuilding Efforts In Quake-Hit Nepal", "Jack Ma Foundation donates medical supplies from China to Israel", "Rwanda's Kagame thanks Jack Ma for 'huge shot in the arm' after receiving donation of test kits", Facts About Cathy Zhang - Billionaire Jack Ma's Wife and Mother of Three, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Jack_Ma&oldid=996225878, World Economic Forum Young Global Leaders, Wikipedia articles needing factual verification from January 2019, Articles containing Chinese-language text, Articles containing simplified Chinese-language text, Articles containing potentially dated statements from 2016, All articles containing potentially dated statements, Articles with unsourced statements from May 2020, Wikipedia articles with CANTIC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SUDOC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, Co-founder and former executive chairman of, In 2004, Ma was honoured as one of the "Top 10 Economic Personalities of the Year" by. They married shortly after graduation in 1988, and alongside working as a Chinese teacher, she was active in the early development of Ma's businesses and became general manager of the main firm, until 2004. As a boy, he did everything he could to learn English. China kicked off an investigation into alleged monopolistic practices at Alibaba Group and summoned affiliate Ant Group to a high-level meeting over financial regulations, escalating scrutiny over the twin pillars of billionaire Jack Ma's internet empire. In my university, I was elected student chairman and later became chairman of the city's Students Federation.” Coming last in class can have a serious impact on any child’s self-esteem, making them feel completely worthless. “From day one,” he explained in 2004, “all entrepreneurs know that their day is about dealing with difficulty and failure rather than defined by ‘success.’ My most difficult time hasn’t come yet, but it surely will. From 1998 to 1999, Ma headed an information technology company established by the China International Electronic Commerce Center, a department of the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation. [72][73], Jack Ma is the founder of the Jack Ma Foundation, a philanthropic organization focused on improving education, the environment and public health. a search engine, Amazon a bookstore, eBay an auction center, Alibaba is an electronic market. In 1999, he founded the Alibaba Group as a business-to-business, e-commerce platform. His overall results were so bad that the university turned him down. For nine years, Ma would ride 27 km (17 miles) on his bicycle to give tourists tours of the area to practice his English. Desp… Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own. 3", "Jack Ma: The man leading the Chinese e-commerce market", "IPO launch of Alibaba pushed back by a week", "Company news; Brown-Forman will become 100% owner of Finlandia", "Private companies have put down strong roots in China", "Alibaba job boom: Jack Ma chats with Trump about how to create 1 million US jobs over 5 years", "Watch Jack Ma pull off his best Michael Jackson dance moves at the Alibaba birthday celebration", "Li Ka-shing, Jack Ma Join Forces to Bring Digital Wallet to Hong Kong", "Timing of Jack Ma's retirement minimizes risk for Alibaba", "Alibaba's Jack Ma Denies Beijing Forced Him Out", "Jack Ma officially retires as Alibaba's chairman", "In pictures: Jack Ma, Alibaba's rock star founder, bows out", "China's President Xi Jinping Personally Scuttled Jack Ma's Ant IPO", "Jack Ma is using Singles Day, a symbol of crass commercialism, to revitalize Tai Chi in China", "This could well be the oddest video you'll see this week", "Billionaire Alibaba CEO Jack Ma sings at surprise music festival appearance", "Alibaba.com: A Smiling Community with a Dream", "The Best Leaders of 2007 - BusinessWeek", "Jack Ma: The World's 100 Most Influential People", "Alibaba Group Clarification with Respect to Alipay Status and Related Statements by Yahoo! 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