Ermias Amelga’s Khali Strategic Consultancy Service, Alibaba’s partner Whale Cloud and the Ethiopian Artificial Intelligence Institute signed a tripartite memorandum of understanding to launch Alibaba’s e-commerce service in Ethiopia.
Ermias said during the signing event that making the country beneficiary of such technological advancements would enable businesses to be internationally competitive.
Ermias Amelga is a controversial businessman who pioneered various businesses including Highland Springs Mineral Water, Zemen Bank, and Access Real Estate after returning from the United States where he worked as an investment banker for 12 years in 1996.
Ermias claimed to launch an e-commerce service in Ethiopia in partnership with Alibaba in six months' time in January this year.
However, after four months the English daily, The Reporter, alleged that the tech giant Alibaba denied Ermias’ claim of partnership with the company.
Though the newspaper stated that Alibaba confirmed it has no partnership with Ermias to open an e-commerce service in Ethiopia, Ermias said the agreement was rather with Whale Cloud Technology Ltd and not Alibaba.
“Whale Cloud is an Alibaba-owned entity through which it conducts its international operations,” Ermias said in a message it sent to The Reporter at the time.
It is just after about a year since Ermias spoke about his plan of establishing an e-commerce platform with Alibaba that the current agreement is signed between the three partners including his company Khali.
Speaking at the agreement event Whale Cloud’s senior sales director Zhiye Yi expressed the company’s pleasure in working with the partners.
It is announced that The Ethiopian Artificial Intelligence Institute will provide the essential data servers and technological infrastructure to realize the implementation of the service.