VENTURES AFRICA – Jack Ma, China’s richest man and CEO of Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba Group is ready and willing to visit Nigeria. Aliababa which recently issued an IPO that raised a record US$25 billion in what is widely considered to be the largest IPO in history. Ma’s personal net worth jumped to US$25 billion from US$21.8 billion after the NYSE IPO valued Alibaba at US$231 billion.
Ma made the comments while speaking on a panel with Nigeria’s Minister of Finance and the Coordinating Minister for the Economy Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Chelsea Clinton, the CEO of General Motors Mary Barra, and the president of the Ford Foundation Darren Walker at the Clinton Global Initiative.
After Dr. Okonjo-Iweala asked him for advice on how to get Nigeria’s young and Internet savvy generation the help they need to make an impact in the country, Ma responded “I’m so excited by Nigeria, so many young people using mobile.” He stated that increasing interest of young people across the world in mobile technologies will be the source of great change.
Ma also advocated a shift from what he called IT technology to DT or Data technology. Ma said, “IT Technology is for me myself. I can manage my company better. DT Technology which I call data technology is to make other people better. The future is making other people better, then you can be successful.”
Ma stressed that Nigeria should help young people improve access to mobile technology and increase their access to information and new experiences through the internet.
“I’m so excited. I will go to Nigeria soon,” Ma said.