Alibaba Shares Jump on Plan to Split Into 6 Units

The retail giant will split into six business segments

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Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. (BABA) shares rose Tuesday as the company announced it will split into six business segments, a restructuring that could lead to multiple initial public offerings.

Key Takeaways

  • Alibaba will spin off multiple business segments to focus on a holding company structure.
  • The plan will see the main company separated from its retail division.
  • The news comes as founder Jack Ma returns to China after a year-long exile.

The company said in a letter to staff it will split into six different segments: cloud, e-commerce, global e-commerce, digital mapping, logistics, and a media arm. Each new division will be run by a separate board of directors and chief executive, and all but one will be free to sell shares to the public for the first time.

The holding company Alibaba Group will be run by the current CEO Daniel Zhang. Zhang said the new entity will increase agility to make decisions and navigate changing markets.

Alibaba's U.S. listed shares jumped 14% to an intra-day high of $99.51 as of 2:45 p.m. EST.

The news came one day after the return of founder Jack Ma to China, ending a year-long exile. Ma's departure coincided with government efforts to tackle monopolies in the country, part of a crackdown that forced the company to shelve an IPO for its subsidiary Ant Financial. His turn to China has led to speculation that the tech crackdown is easing and the new Alibaba structure will likely please Beijing.

Alibaba shares have suffered since the collapse of the Ant deal and are down from an all-time high of almost $319 in November 2020.

Article Sources
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  2. Yahoo Finance. "Alibaba Group Holding Limited (BABA)."

  3. Reuters. "Jack Ma returns to China as government tries to allay private sector fears."

  4. New York Times. "In Halting Ant’s I.P.O., China Sends a Warning to Business."

  5. YCharts. "Alibaba Group All Time high (Daily)."

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