We love to talk to local startups and we’ve seen more and more well designed products (sites and apps) are doing great in the local market. But, we have to admit that it’s still not easy to find a product whose business model is kinda unique even in the global market. TradeSparq is one of the exceptions which I don’t know any western service to compare with.

Social eCommerce is the trend. Now you buy stuff online because you trust its advertisement; but it should make more sense that you buy something because your friends recommended it or somehow you notice they have bought it. We’ve wrote about the local service like Duitang, Taojianghu, Meilishuo etc. TradeSparq is also doing social ecommerce, but instead of doing social shopping like Taojianghu which is Taobao + Social Network, TradeSparq is doing so-called Social Sourcing which is like Alibaba + Social Network. And to be more accurate, as Micael Kleist, founder of TradeSparq described, it’s Alibaba + Linkedin.

Why people sign on Linkedin? One of the reasons is that they want to be connected with guys from their partners, sellers or customers. And why Alibaba has been popular for years, because it enables an easy way for buyers to discover thousands of manufacturers which are mainly from China. However, when you are on Linkedin, usually you don’t know what products your contacts’ companies are actually selling; and on Alibaba, as a manufacturer if you want more exposure, you should pay certain membership fee which is not cheap (~$3,012 per year for Gold Suppliers membership). As a buyer, you can be easily got lost as you don’t know which supplier you should trust more. These are the issues TradeSparq wants to solve.

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Gang Lu

Dr. Gang Lu - Founder of TechNode. He's a Blogger, a Geek, a PhD and a Speaker, with passion in Tech, Internet and R'N'R.