Alibaba.com to Offer Verified Memberships to Pakistani SMEs through PSGI

Alibaba.com (Logo)Alibaba.com, world’s largest B2B portal, has entered into a strategic partnership with Pearl Shine Group International (PSGI) of Pakistan to offer verified membership to Pakistani SMEs trading online at Alibaba.com.

Alibaba.com offers an online space that brings together buyers and sellers to communicate, collaborate and carry out global trade.

More than 650,000 Pakistani SMEs are currently members of Alibaba.com, and the new local partnership will help grow and solidify new potential for local suppliers to enjoy more exposure in the global market.

Alibaba.com will be offering its new service, Verified Membership, to new and existing members for a limited time. Launched at the beginning of 2012, the Verified Membership program is aimed at helping Alibaba.com’s non-paying supplier members establish trust with potential buyers.

Suppliers participating in this program undergo basic background checks to confirm that they are legitimate businesses. Government records such as tax ID numbers and other sources are cross-checked to confirm a company really exists and to verify its contact and other information is accurate. Those who successfully pass the verification process will gain a special logo on their Alibaba.com profiles and enjoy higher search rankings than free members.

Verification for Pakistani suppliers on Alibaba.com will be conducted by its local partner PSGI, with all communication with customers in URDU to offer a more localized experience. With the new Verified Membership program, Alibaba.com and PSGI will further “trade-enable” Pakistani SMEs by confirming their legitimacy and making them more visible to buyers worldwide who source products through Alibaba.com.

“Pakistani exporters need a stronger online presence because the world has turned into a global village,” said PSGI CEO, Irfan Haider Awan. “Local business owners should explore and avail the opportunities beyond our national territory by making intelligent use of e-commerce mechanisms in this new technological era. Such steps will not only help Pakistani SMEs benefit from economies of scale but will also contribute to better balance of trade.”

He further added, “Many countries today are enjoying economic growth by effectively using the Internet for business. The global B2B e-commerce transactions have crossed US$12.4 trillion milestone in 2012 which stood was just $ 3.4 trillion in 2005. Although Pakistan still lacks a substantial presence in terms of online business, it also highlights the high potential this medium represents for us, especially for our 3 million-strong SME community.”

“Alibaba.com is excited about this new partnership with PSGI for it gives us a chance to work closer with the Pakistan market,” said Head of Global Supplier Development and Sales, Timothy Leung, Alibaba Group. “Online business and e-commerce can potentially take Pakistan’s trade opportunities to the next level. We understand the potential of Pakistani SMEs and will continue to offer new programs and services, both online and offline, so these businesses can learn how to capitalize from online trade through Alibaba.com.”

The new partnership between PSGI and Alibaba.com aims to help small businesses market their products internationally, find genuine buyers, sell their products/ services and explore domestic and international business opportunities. It is expected that the partnership will contribute to the development of Pakistan’s e-commerce environment which has the potential to increase business activity, drive economic growth and create new job opportunities for budding entrepreneurs.