Alibaba Releasing APIs & Revenue-Sharing Initiative

Posted Jan 21, 2008

Alibaba Group, the parent company of Alibaba announced recently that they will be making Alibaba’s software platform open-source through the form of APIs that are available for applications and services.  The API will be based on the concept of SaaS (Software as a Service).  Alibaba has about 40 million users and they hope to build a bigger market share within the industry.  Alibaba started in the SaaS market last year.

Alibaba plans to allow their free APIs capture the interest of independent software vendors to promote and sell Alibaba’s services, while being compensated through a revenue-sharing model.  Other Alibaba Group companies that are participating in open-source SaaS initiatives are Taobao and Alimama.  Alibaba partners include Microsoft, Oracle, Cisco Systems, Sun, Dell, IBM, and China Unicom. 

Alibaba is known in the web world as being the “eBay of China.”  Yahoo! acquired 40% of the company in 2005.  And most recently, Alibaba has had one of the most successful IPOs since Google.  The API announcement was made official on  There is some additional coverage at China Web 2.0 Review.