Alibaba has acquired a 500 million euro stake in Chinese smartphone manufacturer Meizu Technology, which currently has a Chinese market share of about 2 %.
Alibaba hopes this move will help introduce its mobile operating system even further in China, while Meizu can now access Alibaba eCommerce channels, which still control the Chinese market.
Analysts are sceptical however, as Meizu is a marginal player in the Chinese smartphone market: more than 60 % of China's huge smartphone market is currently divided among Huawei, Xiaomi, Lenovo, Apple and Samsung. Moreover, Chinese smartphone sales have dropped from 423 million devices were shipped in 2013 to 389 million in 2014. It remains to be seen whether this investment can advance Alibaba's position on the mobile market any further.