This week Amazon opened its own digital storefront on rival Alibaba's Tmall ( http://amazon.tmall.com/ ), an online marketplace for consumers in China, which hosts merchant's storefronts and lets Alibaba take a cut of sales.
The marriage between Amazon and Alibaba is, to put it mildly, an odd one. Alibaba is China's largest e-commerce company. And after going public in the US last year -- in an historic IPO that saw it raise $25 billion -- it has set its sights on e-commerce in the US, where companies like Amazon and eBay dominate. Meanwhile, Amazon has been trying for years to be a major presence in the Chinese market, where it's been able to capture only a small share.