Fake products manufactured in China are just as good as the real thing, according to Alibaba founder Jack Ma.
Ma’s company has come under international scrutiny for selling millions of dollars in knock-off goods, so it sounds like a strange comment coming from the company’s founder.
Ma explains that he isn’t endorsing the practice, only that Chinese factories that top global brands have used for years to manufacture products like dresses and purses have become highly skilled at making their own copycats.
He says that once they are combined with Alibaba’s international presence, the factories simply don’t need international brand names any longer.
“The problem is that the fake products today — they make better quality, better prices than the real product,” Ma told investors at a company event on Tuesday. “The exact factories, the exact raw materials, so they don’t use the name.”
With that being said, Ma added, “We have to stop the fake products.”
The company has long battled counterfeits on its platforms, a problem that still persists today.
Alibaba last month was suspended from the International AntiCounterfeiting Coalition, a global nonprofit that fights fakes.
Before the company issued its record-breaking $25 billion IPO in September 2014, it was already engaged in many lawsuits over counterfeits.