Alibaba shares fall after Daniel Zhang unexpectedly leaves cloud business

  • Zhang has been chairman and CEO of Alibaba Cloud Intelligence Group since 2022, and has been CEO of Alibaba since 2015 and its chairman since 2019.
  • Alibaba announced in June that he would step down as chairman and CEO of Alibaba Group in September and head up the cloud business.

Alibaba CEO Daniel Zhang Yong speaks during the launch of the Alibaba Rural Revitalization Fund in Lanzhou, Gansu Province, China, May 17, 2021.

Vcg | Visual China Group | Good pictures

In a surprise leadership reshuffle in June, Alibaba announced on September 10 that Zhang would step down as both CEO and chairman to focus on its cloud intelligence business.

Co-founder Wu will become CEO and director, while another co-founder, Joseph Tsai, will become chairman from September, the e-commerce company said at the time.

Zhang has been CEO of Alibaba Group since 2015 and Group Chairman since 2019. He has also been the Chairman and CEO of Alibaba Cloud Intelligence Group since 2022.

“Our company’s board deeply appreciates Mr. Zhang for his contributions to the Alibaba Group over the past 16 years,” Alibaba said in a statement on Sunday.

According to a letter to employees, Zhang will continue to contribute to Alibaba “by making a difference in his expertise.” Reuters sawAlibaba will reportedly invest $1 billion in the technology fund that Zhang will establish.

“The company will continue to implement its previously announced plan to place Alibaba Cloud Intelligence Group under a separate management team,” subject to the reorganization plan and related approvals, Alibaba said.

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In May, Alibaba also announced plans to spin off its cloud division into a separate, publicly traded company.

In a major restructuring plan in March, Alibaba split into six business groups in March, with each unit raising outside funding to pave the way for going public.

Alibaba has faced slowing economic growth at home and tough restrictions from Beijing, which have wiped billions from its share price.

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