Any statistic that describes the amount of fake merchandise available via Alibaba's e-commerce platform should be taken with a grain of salt; nobody truly knows. That hasn't prevented counterfeit watchdog NetNames from taking a guess though; it believes anywhere between 20% and 80% of the goods sold via Alibaba's Taoboa aren't actually made by the companies their logos, looks and tags are supposed to imply.
NetNames' suggested range of fake merchandise sold by Alibaba is admittedly wide, but that disparity underscores the complexity of the problem. Even if the real number is somewhere in the middle though, at 50%, that's still 50% too much.
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It's an issue that has nagged BABA stock holders for years, though it has become a much more serious concern over the course of the past year or so. In fact, the problem of knock-offs became so prevalent that Gucci parent company Kering SA filed a suit against Alibaba in mid-2015, claiming that not only did the company not do enough to prevent counterfeit goods from being sold at its website, but thatAlibaba actually encouraged it.