London - Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has signed exclusive partnerships with more than 20 fashion brands, including Zara and Timberland, in its latest step to compete with rivals such as JD.com, which last month signed a deal to sell Taylor Swift’s debut fashion line.

Alibaba said its platform tmall.com will become the only third-party online sales platform for the fashion brands in China, as it looks to boost its credibility by adding more international names to the marketplace.

The company also confirmed that Tmall was expanding its collaboration with more than 160 existing brands on the site, including Gap and Adidas, by adding further products.

Jeff Zhang, president of Alibaba’s China retail marketplaces, said: "Apparel is one of the key product categories on Tmall. We have an extensive collection of brands on the platform, and it is imperative for us to deepen our collaboration with them so we can work together in more strategic ways to enable their success within our ecosystem.”

 

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