Founder and CEO of the Alibaba Group
Author: Chen Wei; Publisher: Pigeon Books (An imprint of GBD Books)
(Pp 246, ISBN 9789384401788, Rs 295)

This is an inspiring biographical piece sequentially sketched about the life and works of Jack Ma—an English language teacher-turned entrepreneur from Hangzhou in China, who founded the world’s largest e-commerce company Alibaba. And the author of this biography is none other than one of his closest students who happened to be his ‘assistant’ later, and till date. The story unfolded in the spring of 1992 when the author joined Jack Ma’s evening English class at a YMCA institute. As both the author and Jack Ma lived in the same neighborhood, they returned home together after the class every day, sharing some common interest other than learning English.

In the year 1995, Jack Ma disbanded his English language class to concentrate on his new e-commerce venture. And right in the year 1999, while Jack Ma was fully concentrating on the establishment of Alibaba the author took care of many other activities which his teacher-cum-boss couldn’t attend. Formally, on April 03, 2008, the author joined Alibaba as Jack Ma’s assistant and the company swung up like a hurricane all across the globe whose sales were now estimated to be larger than the collective total of e-bay and Amazon.

This book is a biography of a successful entrepreneur, not in a mere manner but more like a complete movie in which the reader, as an audience, can enjoy through incidents and expressions. Jack Ma’s co-operation with world organizations, participation in global summits and his love for Taiji or Chinese traditional values and cultures are very much part of the central theme of this book. In a sense, Alibaba Group is the by-product of Taiji philosophy. All accounts of the making of Alibaba Group in this book are not tedious doctrines or complicated jargons, but just amusing details and hearty statements, which surprise and inspire every reader.
– Jyaneswar Laishram

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