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双语:阿里巴巴增长战略不明

2014-09-25    来源:财富网    【      美国外教 在线口语培训

双语:阿里巴巴增长战略不明

双语:阿里巴巴长期以来的目标是主导本土市场,但这家公司最近又决心在全球市场上大展宏图,这两项使命并不一致。

No one disputes that to reward investors, Alibaba must keep growing at tremendous speed in the years to come, least of all its chairman Jack Ma. The question is, where will Alibaba concentrate its investments and manpower to generate the fast-rising revenues and profits it’s promising?
今后几年,阿里巴巴(Alibaba)必须保持飞速增长,以回馈投资者,对于这一点,没人会提出异议,阿里巴巴董事长马云更不会有异议。但问题在于,要实现其承诺的收入和利润快速增长,阿里巴巴应该把财力和人力集中在哪里?

That challenge will require a highly focused growth strategy. Right now, Alibaba’s plans for expansion are a muddle.
要应对这项挑战,需要有高度集中的增长战略。而眼下,阿里巴巴的扩张计划可谓一团乱麻。

Investors are confused—or if they’re not, they should be—by the dissonance between Alibaba’s long-standing goal of dominating its home market and its newfound mission to become a major force around the globe. In its most recent IPO prospectus, filed on September 5, the e-commerce phenomenon makes little mention of plans to expand outside its home market. Instead, it touts Alibaba’s commanding position in China and its ideal positioning to ride the growth wave in digital shopping, which is one of the great consumer trends in history.
阿里巴巴长期以来的目标是主导本土市场,然而,最近该公司又决心在全球市场上大展宏图,这两项使命之间的偏差令投资者困惑。他们也确实应该感到困惑。在9月5日提交的招股说明书里,电子商务巨头阿里巴巴几乎没有提到海外扩张计划。相反,招股书大谈特谈阿里巴巴在国内占据主导地位,并且其定位绝佳,可从数字购物增长浪潮中获益良多。数字购物浪潮可谓史上一大消费趋势。

To make its point, the prospectus is famously packed with staggering statistics, among them that Alibaba handles $298 billion a year in online retail orders and controls 86% of the mushrooming mobile marketplace. Put simply, you could summarize the 665-page prospectus in four words, “China is our future.”
为说明这一点,招股书列举了一系列令人咋舌的数据,这也是招股书的亮点之一。这些数据包括:阿里巴巴一年处理的线上订单额高达2980亿美元;在蓬勃发展的移动购物领域,阿里巴巴控制着86%的市场份额。简单来说,这份长达665页的招股书可以用一句话来概括,那就是“中国是我们的未来”。

But on its recent IPO roadshow, Ma has been selling a totally different strategy. On September 15 in Hong Kong, Ma told reporters that Alibaba harbors big growth ambitions in the U.S. and Europe. And later in San Francisco, he lauded Alibaba’s prospects in Russia and Brazil.
然而,在最近的IPO路演上,马云一直在宣扬另一种截然不同的战略。9月15日,他在香港对记者表示,阿里巴巴意欲在美国和欧洲大展拳脚。随后,他又在旧金山盛赞阿里巴巴在俄罗斯和巴西发展前景广阔。

“It’s not clear what their strategy is,” says Josh Green, co-founder and CEO of Panjiva, a firm that provides global trade data to corporate customers. “The prospectus is all about opportunities in China, and Ma is now talking about his global ambitions. It may be all right for now because they’re doing so well, but in the medium-term, investors will look with a wary eye on any investment that doesn’t have a coherent strategy.”
对此,服务企业用户的全球贸易数据供应商Panjiva联合创始人兼首席执行官乔希•格林表示:“他们的战略不清晰。招股书中大书特书在中国的机会,而马云现在讲的却是全球发展大计。现在阿里巴巴如日中天,这样做也许没问题。但中期而言,如果投资战略前后不一,将招来投资者警惕的目光。”

Green believes that Alibaba ought to deepen its dominance in China. “They’re in a network business,” he says. “The more customers they attract at home, the more businesses follow, then more customers want the new products, and the customer base grows in a mutually reinforcing cycle.”
格林认为,阿里巴巴应该巩固在中国的主导地位。他表示:“他们从事的是网络业务,在本土吸引的消费者越多,随之而来的商户就越多,而新的产品反过来又会吸引更多消费者,用户群的增长会呈现相辅相成之势。”

Investing in Alibaba constitutes a bet on a single nation, and the China of tomorrow may not prove the juggernaut of the past decade, particularly given the recent news of its slowing growth rate and the threat of a downward spiral in real estate prices and construction. Still, getting stronger in the areas in which you’re already a leader makes sense.
投资阿里巴巴就相当于把宝全押在中国身上,而明天的中国也许不会像过去十年那样风光无限,特别是考虑到近来中国经济增长放缓、房产价格和建设规模存在螺旋下跌风险。不过,在自己已经是龙头的领域进一步做强合情合理。

Surprisingly, Alibaba—by its action, rather than its words—isn’t showing a lot of confidence in the next phase of China’s e-commerce miracle. Rather than concentrating solely on digital, it is buying lots of unrelated businesses, including a movie studio, an appliance manufacturer, and a soccer team.
让人意外的是,虽然嘴上不那么说,但阿里巴巴的行动表明,该公司对中国电商发展奇迹的未来并不是特别有信心。阿里巴巴并没有把注意力完全放在数字领域,而是收购了许多和电商无关的业务,包括电影公司、家电制造商和足球俱乐部。

“I’d like to ask Alibaba if they’re bullish or bearish on China,” asks Green. “If they’re bullish, they’d use their poll position to do everything to exploit their dominance.”
格林说:“我想问问阿里巴巴,他们对中国的态度是乐观还是悲观。如果乐观,他们就应该利用自己的领先地位,竭尽全力发挥主导优势。”

If Alibaba does things to become more powerful at home, such as continuing its purchases of logistics specialists, that’s all to the good. But its current acquisition march looks more like a campaign to diversify away from e-commerce.
如果阿里巴巴的举措是为了巩固在中国的领先地位,比如继续收购专业物流公司,那是好事。但现在,该公司的收购行动看着像是要脱离电商领域实现多元化。

So far, Alibaba’s attempts at global expansion haven’t worked, and they’re unlikely to produce anything resembling its success in China, even if they are supported by gigantic investments. Alibaba actually started as a global business-to-business marketplace, Alibaba.com. “From its earliest days, Alibaba.com struggled outside China,” says Green. Local companies proved formidable competitors. “So Alibaba pivoted back to China when they realized their unique position to capitalize on the consumer side.”
到目前为止,阿里巴巴在全球扩张方面做出的尝试都还没有成功,就算有巨额资金支持,这些措施也不太可能重现阿里巴巴在中国取得的成功。实际上,阿里巴巴最初起步时是一个全球B2B平台——Alibaba.com。格林说:“最初,Alibaba.com在海外苦苦挣扎。”实际情况证明,海外市场的竞争对手很难对付。“因此,阿里巴巴意识到自身在利用消费端的独特地位后,就把重心转移到了国内。”

Right now, Alibaba appears to be pursuing a two-part approach to foreign expansion. In developing markets such as Russia and Brazil, it wants to challenge eBay, Amazon, and local players to become a major or dominant competitor. In the U.S., it’s not clear if Alibaba is making scattered investments to diversify its holdings or if it wants to replicate its core e-commerce business. In the former category, it’s taken stakes in Lyft, a car-sharing service, and retail site ShopRunner. But it has also launched its own shopping platform, 11Main.com, a move that may foreshadow the creation of a full suite of e-commerce platforms in the U.S.
目前看来,阿里巴巴正在通过两条途径实现海外扩张。在俄罗斯和巴西等发展中市场,它想挑战eBay、亚马逊(Amazon)和当地电商,从而成为主要竞争者,乃至占据主导地位。在美国,还不清楚阿里巴巴是在四处投资以实现业务多元化;还是说它想复制自己的核心电商业务。该公司已经持有租车服务公司Lyft和零售网站ShopRunner的股份,这属于多元化。但它也推出了自己的购物网站11Main.com,这也许是其在美国打造全方位电商平台的先兆。

Investors, take note: Alibaba’s global expansion won’t be nearly as profitable as its fabulous business in China, the source of 93% of its revenues. “I have great confidence about their ability to beat Amazon in China, and very little confidence in their ability to beat Amazon in the U.S.,” says Green.
投资者请注意,和阿里巴巴惊人的中国业务(为该公司贡献了93%的收入)相比,其全球扩张的盈利水平远不会像前者那么高。格林指出:“我完全相信阿里巴巴能在中国击败亚马逊,但我不大相信他们能在美国做到这一点。”

Green worries most that Alibaba will suffer not so much from a slowdown in China, but rather from a “self-inflicted wound” caused by pursuing the wrong strategy. It’s all about how Alibaba uses its capital. Pouring money into China has been a winner. Lavishing capital in places where tough competitors all want a piece could be a loser. For Alibaba, a global strategy may indeed be the wrong one.
格林认为,中国经济减速并不会给阿里巴巴带来多大的不利影响,他最担心的是阿里巴巴由于采取了错误的战略而自讨苦吃,以至于元气大伤。说到底,问题在于阿里巴巴如何运用自身资金。把大量资金投入中国市场令该公司大获成功。而在强手如林、人人都想分一杯羹的地方一掷千金则可能一败涂地。对阿里巴巴来说,全球化战略或许真的是个错误。(财富中文网)

译者:Charlie



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