Reinventing The “Mom and Pop Shop”

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  • PHOTOGRAPH: CORBIS/ ARABIAN EYE

PHOTOGRAPH: CORBIS/ ARABIAN EYE

PHOTOGRAPH: CORBIS/ ARABIAN EYE

Lucy Peng

Nationality: Chinese
Designation: Business woman/ Founder, Alibaba Group

Lucy Peng is a Chinese business person who set up a “mom and pop” model at Alibaba in which one executive, “mom”, in every group focused on fostering teamwork and inciting passion, while another, “pop”, did quantitative performance assessments.

Lucy founded the Chinese e-commerce business Alibaba Group. She earned a degree in business administration in 1994 from Hangzhou Institute of Commerce of Zhejiang Gongshang University. Following her graduation, she taught at the Zhejiang University of Finance and Economics for five years. In March 2013, she was appointed CEO of the new Alibaba Small and Micro Financial Services Group.

Lucy, joined Alibaba just as the Internet was taking off in China. A decade later she compared the company’s unique culture to that of Starbucks. “The expression in the eyes of the employees was like those often found between sisters and brothers rather than co-workers,” she said in 2009 after visiting the U.S. As well as managing HR, Lucy heads Alipay, a rapidly growing business run that processed $520 billion in payments last year, three times that of PayPal.

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