Alibaba, one of the biggest e-commerce and retail service platforms in the world will be facing a huge change in their board of executive’s composition. Jack Ma, who has been in charge in the executive chairman role for 20 years, will officially pass the baton in exactly 12 months’ time on his 55th birthday, but will remain on the board until 2020.
He plans to hand the executive chairman role to Daniel Zhang, a finance veteran who’s presided over an ambitious expansion and won over investors in three years as chief executive officer. Ma is moving on with Alibaba in a dominant position in China and pushing into overseas markets from Southeast Asia to Russia. Leadership will now fall to Zhang and the 35 other partners who control the company.
The billionaire started Alibaba.com in 1999 as a business-to-business marketplace with 17 co-founders. An investment from Japan’s SoftBank Group Corp. helped the company expand to allow consumers in China buy online and fueled its rise.
Alibaba has since moved into cloud computing, digital payments, health care, Hollywood movies and backing China’s startups. Its share price has more than doubled since its record 2014 initial public offering. The shares slid 2.1 percent to $159.03 in New York Monday.
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