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Alibaba launches operating system partnership program

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. said Jan. 10 that it will launch its "A100" strategic partnership program, in which clients can use the e-commerce giant's operating system within their own businesses.

A100 partners will have access to various services relating to payments, logistics, sales, supply chain optimization, marketing and other cloud-based technologies, allowing them to combine online and offline systems in what it calls a "new retail" model. Alibaba will also establish an account-serving team to supervise program implementation.

The company has established cross-platform partnerships with Nestlé SA and Starbucks Corp., and plans to roll the Alibaba OS partnership model out to other domestic and international businesses in the near future.

Alibaba said the move to share its proprietary infrastructure comes as it transitions from a pure e-commerce player to a broader technology company.

On Jan. 7, Bayerische Motoren Werke AG said it will integrate Alibaba's voice assistant Tmall Genie in selected China models by 2019-end.