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“Under his stewardship, Alibaba has seen consistent and sustainable growth for 13 consecutive quarters.. Starting the process of passing the Alibaba torch to Daniel and his team is the right decision at the right time,” Ma said in a letter released by the company. Ma, a former English teacher with no technical background, co-founded Alibaba in 1999 with 17 others and has become one of China’s richest people with a net worth of $36.6 billion, according to Forbes. The company, founded at a time when the industry was still dominated by state-owned firms and entrepreneurship was seen as a risky career path, has grown to have more than 66,000 full-time employees and a market value of some $420 billion.
“He put a human face on technology, and took China onto the global stage, not as a state-owned enterprise, crucially,” said Duncan Clark, managing director at Beijing tech advisory BDA and author of “Alibaba: The House that Jack Built.”, He is also known for his eccentric personality and has donned wigs and costumes to perform highly choreographed pop routines at company events, Last year he starred alongside Chinese action star Jet Li in a short kung fu film, In the letter on Monday, Ma said he had been personalized cufflinks and tie clip set planning his exit for ten years and has previously said he wants the company to last 102 years, choosing a specific number to motivate employees..
After he steps down, he will continue to mentor management as part of the “Alibaba Partnership”, a 36-member group of core company managers. The group has the ability to nominate the majority of directors on the company’s board, and currently five of Alibaba’s eleven board members have been nominated by the partnership. Other members include Eric Jing, chief of Alibaba payment affiliate Ant Financial [ANTFIN.UL], Joe Tsai, executive vice chairman of Alibaba, Simon Hu, chief of Alibaba Cloud, and Lucy Peng, who heads Alibaba’s Southeast Asia business.
Since handing over the CEO role, Ma, who is married with three children, has concentrated on philanthropy and promoting Alibaba internationally at business and political events, 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 personalized cufflinks and tie clip set that represented about 2 percent of Alibaba’s equity at the time, Last year Ma invested 300 million yuan ($45 million) in a rural education project in China, He has also established a scholarship program in Newcastle, Australia..
Ma, who owns roughly 6 percent of Alibaba’s stock and also controls Ant Financial, is stepping back amid more challenging times for Chinese tech companies as sales growth in China’s eastern mega-cities shows signs of slowing. Alibaba saw sales at its e-commerce business swell 61 percent in the latest reported quarter, but its profit margins have been squeezed by big-ticket investments as it battles to maintain its dominant position in e-commerce and payments. The company, which is battling arch rival Tencent Holdings Ltd for pole position in the food delivery market, recently said it will merge units including Ele.me and Koubei and raise funds for the combined business.
GENEVA (Reuters) - Cartier maker Richemont (CFR.S) made Jerome Lambert chief executive on Monday, handing the luxury goods veteran the task of continuing to take the group, in particular its watch brands, digital, Richemont, also known for its IWC and Piaget watches, scrapped the CEO role a year and a half ago, when Richard Lepeu retired, appointing instead a senior executive committee, The appointment of Lambert, which coincided with the announcement of a 10 percent rise in constant currency sales personalized cufflinks and tie clip set growth in the five months to Aug, 31, was read as a sign Richemont controlling shareholder and Chairman Johann Rupert is now confident enough to step back from day-to-day management..
“Jerome’s new role sees him taking responsibility for the Group’s future growth at a time when consumer habits are changing significantly,” Rupert said in a statement. Lambert, who steps up from his role as chief operating officer, was seen as a leading contender to take on the CEO role after Georges Kern left to lead rival brand Breitling. Rupert did not elaborate on the changes, but a recent management overhaul and the acquisition of online distributors Yoox Net-a-Porter and Watchfinder.co.uk have made it clear that making Richemont’s watches fit for the digital age is key.
Lambert would work with the heads of Cartier, Van Cleef & Arpels and the group’s personalized cufflinks and tie clip set finance head on the senior executive committee “to ensure a coherent approach to achieving our common goals”, Rupert said, “Rupert clearly doesn’t see a major crisis on the horizon”, Jon Cox of Kepler Cheuvreux said, adding the appointment indicated Rupert would revert to his role of chairman, Richemont said strong sales at its jewelry brands, Cartier and Van Cleef & Arpels, particularly in Asia Pacific and the Americas, helped overall sales rise by 10 percent in constant currency in the five months to Aug, 31..