First it was global production, now Chinese company surpasses Walmart as world’s largest retailer

On April 5, the SEC reported that China’s e-commerce behemoth Alibaba has now surpassed Walmart as the world’s largest retailer, putting China clearly in the top spot for global production, and rising retail market share.

In fact, Alibaba’s success marks a paradigm shift, where the world’s largest e-commerce company is now bigger than the world’s largest brick and mortar retailer.

China’s e-commerce site Alibaba has become the world’s largest retail platform, according to a US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing released on Tuesday.

Alibaba has yet to announce the financial results for the last quarter of its fiscal year ending on March 31, but the statement makes it clear the company has outpaced Walmart that posted revenues of $482.1 billion for its fiscal year ending January 31.

In the fortnight before the filing, the Chinese retailer said it had reached 3 trillion yuan (about $476 billion) in Gross Market Value (GMV).

“With 10 days remaining in our fiscal year ending March 2016, Alibaba’s China retail marketplace platforms surpassed 3 trillion yuan in GMV. That is about $476 billion and, if the platforms we operate were a province, we would rank as the 6th largest provincial economy in China,” said Alibaba’s Executive Vice Chairman Joe Tsai in a blog post on March 21.

The company’s record-breaking sales show that China, as the world’s largest retail market, has switched from offline to online, Alibaba said. – Russia Today

Another interesting fact about Alibaba is that directly and indirectly, they support 15 million jobs where Walmart employs only 2.1 million workers.

welcome to walmart

The success of Alibaba is a two-fold phenomenon, showing that China is rising in economic retail power at the same time that the U.S. is waning both domestically, and globally.  And it also pinpoints the paradigm shift for e-commerce as the indisputable wave of the future since tax and regulatory burdens imposed by starved governments have put physical store fronts squarely on the path to the graveyard.

Kenneth Schortgen Jr is a writer for,, and To the Death Media, and hosts the popular web blog, The Daily Economist. Ken can also be heard Wednesday afternoons giving an weekly economic report on the Angel Clark radio show.