Ep. 106: Making Taobao shopping available to foreigners with Jay Thornhill

发表时间:2020-07-26 17:06


China is leading globally in E-commerce with players like Alibaba and JD.com paving the way. Most growth is coming from the domestic market tailored to the Chinese consumer. But as a foreigner living in China you want the same benefits as any of your peers in China. Today we are going to talk about how to make shopping on Taobao, Tmall and JD.com available for non-Chinese speaker. For this episode we spoke with Jay Thornhill co-founder of Baopals chasing is China dream. Baopals is helping foreigners located in China with their online shopping in Taobao, the largest B2C platform in China. Tune in to hear more about his story going from a start-up into a mature business and how to scale servicing foreigners in China.

About Jay Thornhill

Starting as an English teacher Jay is an Australian-American, born in Australia, and grew up in the US. To cease his entrepreneurial spirit he left his home and traveled to China. With the intention of staying for 1 year, he ended up staying for over 12 years now.

In 2015 he ventured Baopals together with two of his friends Charlie and Tyler Baopals.com as the first platform to give foreigners in China an easy and enjoyable way to shop on Taobao, Tmall, and JD.com. All 1 billion-plus products on these platforms are available, with up-to-date pricing and product info, in English, and reorganized to make shopping on baopals as easy as pie. In the past years, they have sold over millions of products to become a solid market leader in the industry.

They are a digital interface between the factory of the world and foreigners in China eager to buy online. With a multi-cultural team of 40, they are bound to make a bigger footprint for foreigners in China and exploring ways to service a much more global audience. And even paying it forward to other start-up entrepreneurs with different business services.


  • How to benefit from grants as a foreign start-up in China

  • Jay's and his China dream

  • What problem they are trying to solve with their business

  • How getting started and perseverance paid off

  • Entrepreneurship in China

  • How to reach scale targeting foreigners in China

  • How to keep a friendly vibe and company culture after maturing the business

  • Navigating platform based selling and social selling and incorporating this into Baopals

  • What peak season festivals such as Single's Day (11-11), 12-12 and 618 looks like

  • How focus helped progress the business

  • Giving back to China's start-up communities

  • His China war story

Episode Mentions:

Episode Mentions:

  • Find Jay on LinkedIN or reach out via email: jay@baopals.com

  • Website: www.baopals.com

  • Platforms: Taobao.com, Tmall.com, JD.com, Xiaohongshu.com, Fancy.com

  • Social shipping platforms: Pinduoduo, Toutiao, Douyin.

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