Alibaba says its AWS-a-like division embiggened by 138%

Biz has 2.3 million customers. Half a million of them actually pay, too

Alibaba’s cloud computing division Alicloud reported bumper growth of 138 per cent to $468m (£322m) for its full financial year 2016, as more paying customers flocked to the Middle Kingdom's AWS equivalent.

As of March 31, 2016, AliCloud had more than 2.3 million customers, including more than 500,000 paying customers.

The outfit has been keen to boost its international cloud expansion over the last year, which has mainly targeted Chinese companies seeking to expand abroad. Last year it promised to pump $1bn (£637m) into its cloudy arm, previously going under the brand of Aliyun.

Since then it has rolled out a number of data centres in the US as well as a raft of partnerships with companies such as chipzilla Intel, data centre outfit Equinix.

In January it also announced a $1bn partnership with Nvidia to expand its deep learning and big data systems over the next three years.

In a grandiose statement Alibaba's group exec Joe Tsai described the company's Alicloud as "one the largest cloud computing businesses in the world."

However, the cloud biz represents just three per cent of its revenue.

Overall the Chinese tat bazaar posted a 33 per cent year-on-year increase of $15.6bn (£10.7bn). The outfit had 423 million annual active buyers in the 12 months ended March 31, 2016. ®

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