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Alibaba Takes Step Back in US Retail Push

Last year, when Alibaba first began making noises about going public, retailers began to worry that the kind of price and service competition that Amazon sparked two decades ago was going to happen all over again. The Chinese retail giant’s IPO in September turned out to be the biggest in the history of the New York Stock Exchange, blowing away even the generally high expectations of many observers and garnering the company some $22 billion to play with and invest.  The company has indeed invested in several companies in the U.S., including riding-hailing app Lyft, Snapchat, Tango, and other tech startups, as well as retailer Fanatics and some entertainment ventures. And the company, saying it wanted to overtake Wal-Mart someday, announced the launch of its U.S. marketplace 11 Main before its highly anticipated IPO. 

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