Alibaba co-founder Jack Ma announces retirement

08 September, 2018, 16:13 | Author: Larry Hoffman
  • China's richest man Jack Ma will retire on Monday

He has told the New York Times that he will now focus on philanthropy in education. Customers use its e-commerce platforms to order products that a year ago saw package deliveries reach 55 million a day.

Xi has tightened control over businesses, especially ones that allow people to communicate over the Internet, and gone after billionaires who have mismanaged companies, allegedly committed crimes, such as bribery, or run afoul of Chinese politics. The Chinese economy is also facing slowing growth and increasing debt, and the country is embroiled in an escalating trade war with the United States.

He will turn 54 on Monday, which is also a holiday in China known as Teacher's Day.

One of the world's richest men and a revered figure in his homeland of China, Mr Ma said it was "the beginning of an era, not the end".

"This is something I think I can do much better than being CEO of Alibaba", he told Bloomberg TV recently.

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"There are a lot of things I can learn from Bill Gates". The New York Times is blocked in China by Communist Party censors and there was no official statement from Alibaba on Saturday.

Ma's net worth is $39.9 billion, according to Bloomberg's Billionaires Index.

As per a Reuters report, while Ma's retirement marks a milestone in the company's history, analysts believe and industry insiders believe that it is highly unlikely that his involvement in the company will change significantly.

Ma is stepping back at a tricky time for Chinese tech firms.

If he were to leave the company he founded in a Hangzhou apartment, it would remain controlled by the partnership structure, which enables a group of executives at Alibaba and affiliates to decide on board nominations.

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He retired as Alibaba's chief executive in 2013, eventually handing the reins to his protege Daniel Zhang, but he remained active within the company, providing strategic direction as chairman.

Today, Alibaba's empire encompasses e-commerce, online banking, cloud computing, digital media and entertainment - and even a corporate messaging service similar to Slack.

In 2014, he created the Jack Ma Foundation, which has worked to improve education in rural China.

Speaking at an event in Australia in 2017, Ma explained his view on philanthropy. "I can never be as rich, but one thing I can do better is to retire earlier", he said.

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