Alibaba CEO Zhang to succeed Jack Ma as chairman


As per the latest development, CEO Daniel Zhang will succeed Jack Ma as Chairman of the board, starting September 10, 2019, on the 55th birthday of Jack.

Following the succession, Ma will remain a permanent member of the Alibaba Partnership, a 36-member group of core company managers, which has the right to nominate a majority of the directors to the board of the company.

Founded in 1999 by Chinese teacher-turned-entrepreneur Jack Ma as a platform to connect Chinese manufacturers with the world, Hangzhou-based Alibaba stands among one of the largest companies in the world.

"This transition demonstrates that Alibaba has stepped into the next level of corporate governance from a company that relies on individuals, to one built on systems of organisational excellence and a culture of consistent talent development", Mr. Ma said in his letter.

As the Indian e-commerce space flourishes - with Walmart's acquisition of Flipkart and Amazon pouring in millions of dollars - recent media reports indicated that Ma has plans to invest into Reliance Retail Ltd which, if true, will see Alibaba have physical presence and a bigger retail clout in India.

Alibaba Group Chairman Jack Ma makes a speech at 2018 Alibaba Xin Philanthropy Conference on September 5, 2018.

The former English teacher, who is said to be worth more than $40bn (£31bn), revolutionised how Chinese people shop and transact. Zhang, 46, has been in the job since 2015 after serving as the company's chief operating officer.

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Unusual are the ways in which tech honchos function: News about a change of guard came via his interview on Friday with The New York Times - at a time when US-China trade war is at its zenith - and not from Alibaba itself.

According to the company, Paytm AI Cloud processes and stores their consumers' data locally in servers located in India - a demand from the government that has resulted in its rival WhatsApp and Apple deferring their digital payments services in the country. "All these things that I've been preparing for 10 years", he said, who is now China's richest man.

"The world is big, and I am still young, so I want to try new things", Mr Ma said, adding he plans to continue in his role as founding partner.

Alibaba listed in NY in 2014 in what was then the world's biggest initial public offering of shares.

In 2014, he and co-founder Joe Tsai set up a charitable trust focusing on the environment and health, funded by share options they own that represented about 2 percent of Alibaba's equity at the time.

After the meeting he said that they had both agreed that US-China relations "should be strengthened, should be more friendly and do better".