back to article Alibaba Cloud revenue grows 62% – but it's still just a sixth the size of AWS

Alibaba has revealed that its cloudy revenue grew 62 per cent in the year to 30 March 2020 for an annual run rate of US$5.6 billion. The company last week announced its Q4 and FY 19/20 results, with the annual headline figure of $71bn revenue representing 35 per cent year-on-year growth. In Q4 the company won $16bn of revenue …

  1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    "why buyers beyond the middle kingdom would consider its offerings"

    Good question. Why go and put your data on servers that can be looked into by Beijing ?

    Except that thousands of non-USA companies are putting their corporate data into offerings that come under White House jurisdiction, so why not ?

    Especially if it's cheaper.

    The Cloud War will happen.

    1. Packet

      Re: "why buyers beyond the middle kingdom would consider its offerings"

      And I do not see China as winning this 'cloud war' just for one reason: trust-worthiness.

      Yes, the US govt can legally look into your data if you house it in a US datacenter - but the reasons to do so still need to have some sort of legality, which with legal counsel can be contested / appealed.

      China, on the other hand, does not concern itself with such trivialities. You can be in trouble for any banality.

      Why subject yourself to that sort of additional stress of disruption?

      1. southen bastard

        Re: "why buyers beyond the middle kingdom would consider its offerings"

        And just what planet do you come from?

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "why buyers beyond the middle kingdom would consider its offerings"

        Yes, the USA has some sort of legality, but Alibaba isn't a small player, so ultimately at some point a large USA company and a large Chinese company will balance together at the point in which they only cave in to their respective governments. I think this can be seen for any company regardless of nation, so the question might not be who do you trust to store your data, but who do want to keep your data from. There could be reasons that certain companies would want to hide "evidence" under another nations laws.

      3. LucreLout

        Re: "why buyers beyond the middle kingdom would consider its offerings"

        And I do not see China as winning this 'cloud war' just for one reason: trust-worthiness.

        It'll be a hard war to lose when they can simply have their politicians pass a "You must use a Chinese provider" regulation and pretty much guarantee survival in the face of whoever wins out between MSFT, AMZN, or GOOG.

        Safest bet for any investor is to buy some shares in all of them - then it doesn't matter who wins; its not like the cloud market is going to get smaller as everyone rushes back to on-prem DC's.

    2. stepheT

      Re: "why buyers beyond the middle kingdom would consider its offerings"

      We have all recently seen how trustworthy China is. No one will use Chinese services if they can avoid it. Anyone who thinks China does not have access to any data stored in China just needs to look at what is happening in Hong Kong, and look at Chinese law. The White House does not have such access to data stored in the US. All US data is encrypted and the White House does not have access unless going through the courts. A public exercise. In China the CCP can just demand in secret, and any company operating in China (including companies like Tesla, Apple) have to supply or suffer 'consequences'.

      1. Packet

        Re: "why buyers beyond the middle kingdom would consider its offerings"

        Very well stated!

        (Better than I could)

  2. Rol Silver badge

    Stack it high. Sell it higher.

    So this morning, and only for a fleeting moment, did I consider buying cigarette lighters from Alibaba at 4 cents each. Minimum order, 100,000 of them!

    I only need about 500 to see me out, and would then be left with 99,500. Obviously I couldn't sell them on Alibaba at 50p each, but I could on Amazon or Ebay.

    Based on that, I can assume the $35Bn in revenue that AWS generates, comes from $3Bn of stock being sold on at hugely inflated prices, to a public that has little idea of how much factory gate prices are.

    Napoleon might have been right to slur the Brit's as a nation full of shop keepers, but seeing as the three essential things necessary to fight a successful war is gold, gold and more gold, he should have realised, retailers were always best placed to win in any conflict.

    As for the sodomite reference that he goes on to sleight us with, I can only assume it is a metaphor for the act of selling goods at ten times their cost to your customers.

    1. Anonymous Crowbar

      Re: Stack it high. Sell it higher.

      AWS revenue doesnt include amazon marketplace/tatbazaar.

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