Staff Reporters
Jun 17, 2021

Asia-Pacific Power List 2021: Chris Tung, Alibaba

As CMO of Alibaba for the past five years, this marketer is no stranger to exponential growth and not surprisingly wants to move even faster on new and sustainable business growth models.

Asia-Pacific Power List 2021: Chris Tung, Alibaba
Asia-Pacific’s 50 most influential and purposeful marketers

Chris Tung

Chief marketing officer 
Alibaba Group
Member since 2018

Over the past year, both Alibaba and Alipay have again been in the spotlight due to their size and strength, which usually is a good thing, but isn’t always, as their respective antitrust fine and Ant Group IPO halt have demonstrated. Yet the setbacks didn’t stop Tung and Alibaba from incubating new brands and products or helping others to develop or sell their own.  

Tmall Innovation Center (TMIC) partnered with 200 top-tier corporations, owning 1500 world-class brands, including Mars, Procter & Gamble, and Estée Lauder, and incubated more than 40,000 products in 2020. As a result, 1500 of these products reached the GMV of 1 million, and 150 of them reached the GMV of 10 million. 

In the 11.11 Global Shopping Festival alone, 16 new brands generated a GMV that exceeded RMB100 million. Moreover, 360 new brands' GMV topped their respective categories, compared to only 11 in the 2019 11.11 Global Shopping Festival and 26 in the 2020 6.18 Mid-Year Shopping Festival.

Little wonder then, that Tung returns to our list and Alibaba Group stands on top of the Top 50 Chinese Global Brand Builders report of 2021, compiled by Google and Kantar, responsible for building not only its own brand, but those of many others as well. 

In 2020, as live streaming ecommerce skyrocketed during the pandemic and lockdown, Alibaba produced the brand film "Kung Fu Broadcasters" featuring China's most popular ecommerce livestreamers Jiaqi Li, Viya, well-known host Han Wang and actress Tao Liu. Not content with a one-off project, Tung invited more celebrities to become livestreamers in order to develop a more sustainable business model for the Taobao Live ecosystem.

What's more, under his watch, Taobao Live also expanded quickly into the rural areas in China and attracted over 10,000 new agricultural livestreamers. By the end of March 2021, more than 100,000 farmers carried out 2.52 million live sessions to sell their produce in the past 12 months.  

Since Alibaba is a Worldwide Olympic Partner, Tung’s team also supported the Olympic community by presenting the Cloud Gallery, a cloud-based art museum using digital tools to help Japanese artists showcase their art and craftsmanship. When the Tokyo Olympic Games were postponed, the company organised the biggest-ever livestreaming event for Chinese Olympic athletes in June 2020. 

Prior to his current position, Tung was the CEO at digital agency VML China after serving as PepsiCo China's marketing VP. Before that, he worked at Procter & Gamble, Gigamedia and L’Oréal.

Asia-Pacific’s 50 most influential and purposeful marketers


Campaign Asia

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