Alibaba to overhaul e-commerce business, appoint new CFO

Chinese tech giant’s reorganisation comes as it faces increased competition, slowing economy and a regulatory crackdown.

Alibaba has announced it will appoint a new chief financial officer [File: Thomas Peter/Reuters]

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd said it was reorganising its international and domestic e-commerce businesses and would appoint a new chief financial officer.

The changes, announced on Monday, come as Alibaba faces headwinds on multiple fronts, including increased competition, a slowing economy and a regulatory crackdown.

Alibaba said it would form two new units to house its main e-commerce businesses – international digital commerce and China digital commerce, in a bid to become more agile and accelerate growth.

The international digital commerce unit will house Alibaba’s overseas consumer-facing and wholesale businesses and include AliExpress, and Lazada. The unit will be headed by Jiang Fan, who had been president of the Taobao and Tmall marketplaces.

Alibaba will house its domestic commerce businesses in the China digital commerce unit, which will be led by Trudy Dai, a founding member of Alibaba, it said.

The company’s deputy chief financial officer, Toby Xu, will succeed Maggie Wu as its chief financial officer from April; his appointment was described as part of the company’s leadership succession plan.

Xu joined Alibaba from PWC three years ago and was appointed deputy CFO in July 2019.

Wu, who helped lead three Alibaba-related company public listings as CFO, will continue to serve as an executive director on Alibaba’s board.

The e-commerce giant’s Hong Kong-listed shares slid 8 percent in early morning trade, tracking Friday declines made in the United States. US-listed shares of Chinese firms tumbled on concerns about stricter regulatory scrutiny at home in the wake of plans by Didi Global Inc to delist from the New York Stock Exchange.

Last month, Alibaba slashed its forecast for annual revenue growth to its slowest pace since its 2014 stock market debut and saw sales at its banner event, online shopping festival Singles Day, grow at their slowest rate ever despite record sales.

Source: Reuters