AutoNavi, the Chinese mapping company Alibaba Group has fully acquired, talked its monetization plans at the 2014 World Geospatial Developers Conference (WGDC): (1) transaction-based commissions from third parties who use its data and solutions; (2) enabling services on its platform to trade user data and take commissions.

AutoNavi has been introducing offline stores or third-party services onto its map-based marketplace, hoping to build a Taobao-style platform. Taxi booking apps, house cleaning service Gviva, moving & house cleaning service Taskp, real estate service Homelink and many others have been on the platform. Alibaba also has built marketplaces for offline stores, from group-buying to online restaurant booking, so that it has data about those merchants.

AutoNavi has launched APIs/SDKs for online services or mobile apps to use its data. The company will launch a solution later that enables those aforementioned services to take payments (possibly through Alipay) and create routes for users — It’s been already available on Alipay that users can search for stores nearby, find routes on AutoNavi’s Amap and of course make payments.

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Tracey Xiang

Tracey Xiang is Beijing, China-based tech writer. Reach her at traceyxiang@gmail.com