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Alibaba, a new Olympic sponsor, faces challenges with low visibility and competition from 12 other sponsors, in addition to its relatively limited global brand recognition and influence.


Collaborating closely with the design team, I actively facilitated and contributed to the brainstorming sessions, particularly in the early stages of the project. Additionally, I played an integral role in the design implementation process and ultimately presented the finished product.

The design team delved into crucial inquiries to shape our process: understanding Alibaba's identity and operations, exploring its connection to the Olympics and the Tokyo 2020 Games, and contemplating visual representation. These questions served as vital touchstones, influencing the design process significantly.


Alibaba Group's mission is to facilitate global business by offering essential technology infrastructure and marketing reach to enterprises, especially small businesses. Through its diverse operations in core commerce, cloud computing, digital media, entertainment, and innovation initiatives, Alibaba serves millions of businesses worldwide. It empowers enterprises to leverage the internet to engage with customers, revolutionize their marketing, sales, operations, and enhance their overall business performance.

Who is Alibaba and what does Alibaba do?

Alibaba's "To the Greatness of Small" campaign at the 2018 Pyeongchang winter games celebrated underdogs and their potential for success through technology. Similarly, the Tokyo 2020 Olympics targets younger Japanese audiences with five new sports and positive values. Through this association, Alibaba aims to build a positive brand narrative and empower Japanese youth with technology and platforms to achieve their goals.

What is Alibaba’s relationship with the Olympics and the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games?

After surveying brand partnerships online, we found that a vertical stroke was commonly used to represent partnerships. However, we realized that this symbol didn't accurately convey Alibaba's relationship with the Olympics partnership. Additionally, as Alibaba's global businesses like Taobao, Tmall, and Juhuasuan were growing, we wanted to incorporate them into our design.

How can we present this defined relationship visually?

We carefully considered several constraints, including the logo's structure, while creating our designs. To guide our creative process, we focused on two essential keywords: "cornerstone (基石)" and "blossom (绽放)".


The team went through several rounds of design exploration and came up with many different variations of the logo. 


After extensive discussions and revisions, the core brand information is displayed above. Alibaba aims to enhance its positive global brand image through this favorable association. Despite being a twenty year old enterprise, Alibaba, like young people in Japan, is continuously learning and evolving. As part of a collaborative journey, Alibaba is dedicated to empowering and equipping Japanese youths with advanced technology and platforms to accelerate their progress and achieve their goals more efficiently.

The nine shooting rays in the logo symbolize Alibaba's nine core businesses, all of which are participating in the TOP programme, and the crucial role that the Group plays in supporting the Olympics through its innovative digital and cloud technologies. Furthermore, this design embodies Alibaba's unwavering commitment to empowering and accelerating the aspirations of young people as they journey towards their future goals.

Alibaba Olympic logo displayed at the opening ceremony of the Alibaba Cloud gallery in Narita airport.

Alibaba Cloud x Olympics combination logo featured here in the Alibaba Cloud services partner ceremony with the IOC.

Use of the Alibaba Olympic logo at the Alibaba employees' sports festival

Daniel Zhang in Shanghai Cloud ME studio


After many rounds of internal reporting and approval by the International Olympic Committee, the final logos:

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