Technology StocksAlibaba Group Holding Limited

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From: Glenn Petersen9/27/2017 9:44:29 PM
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Alibaba said it plans to invest over $15 billion in the next five years to develop its global logistics network.

Alibaba pays $807M to take majority ownership in logistics affiliate Cainiao

by Jon Russell ( @jonrussell)
September 26, 2017

Alibaba is getting serious about logistics after it agreed to invest RMB 5.3 billion ($807 million) in order to take majority ownership in subsidiary company Cainiao.

Cainiao was created four years ago alongside eight other backers to bring organization in Chinese logistics, particularly around e-commerce deliveries. The company raised its first outside funding in March 2016 — reportedly RMB 10 billion ($1.54 billion) at a RMB 50 billion ($7.7 billion) valuation — from backers including Temasek Holdings and GIC in Singapore, Malaysia’s Khazanah Nasional and China-based Primavera Capital.

It is currently not profitable, but investors see its close relationship with Alibaba as the ticket to developing a lucrative business. Alibaba said the goal is to enable e-commerce services in China to fulfill customer orders within 24 hours, and those overseas within 72 hours, and Cainiao is a core part of that. Indeed, Alibaba said it plans to invest over $15 billion in the next five years to develop its global logistics network.

Cainiao itself just set up a billion-dollar fund with insurance firm China Life to speed up China’s parcel networks with a range of new handling and sorting offices.

Today’s investment is likely to go through next month and it will take Alibaba’s ownership from 47 percent to 51 percent, which in theory gives Cainiao a valuation of RMB 132.5 billion ($19.9 billion). But that’s theoretical because Alibaba’s motivation is likely to have been influenced by other matters.

The SEC last year launched a probe into Alibaba’s accounting systems, and whether it has violated federal securities laws. The firm’s accounting of Cainiao was one component to that, since it only listed some financial information as a minority equity holder. Now, as a majority stakeholder following this deal, it is likely that Alibaba’s transparency over the company will increase going forward. Beyond more information for regulators, it may also appease shareholders curious to learn more about a company Alibaba is helping to bankroll.

Alibaba’s other affiliate companies include Koubei, which got a $1.1 billion injection earlier this year, and Ant Financial, which is valued at over $60 billion and tipped to go public soon.

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From: JakeStraw10/3/2017 11:44:23 AM
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Alibaba Group Holding Limited is now covered by analysts at Credit Suisse Group. They set an "outperform" rating and a $220.00 price target on the stock.

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From: Glenn Petersen10/11/2017 5:35:48 AM
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Alibaba says it will invest more than $15 billion over three years in global research program
  • Alibaba announced it will invest more than $15 billion over the next three years in a global research and development program
  • As part of the program, Alibaba will set up research labs in China, the United States, Russia, Israel and Singapore
  • The labs will conduct research in areas such as data intelligence, Internet of Things, financial technology, quantum computing and human-machine interaction
Saheli Roy Choudhury | @sahelirc
October 11, 2107

Wang He | Getty Images
Jack Ma, founder of the Alibaba Group attends the 2017 forum on rural headmasters on July 12, 2017 in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province of China.

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba[ announced Wednesday it will invest more than $15 billion over the next three years into a global research and development program to increase collaboration and develop new technologies.

That sum was slightly more than double the total amount Alibaba spent on R&D between 2014 and the fiscal year that ended March 31, 2017.

The program is called the Academy for Discovery, Adventure, Momentum and Outlook — DAMO Academy for short. As part of the program, Alibaba will set up seven research labs in Beijing, Hangzhou, San Mateo and Bellevue in the U.S., Moscow, Tel Aviv and Singapore, and recruit 100 researchers to staff them.

Those labs will undertake projects in areas of data intelligence, Internet of Things, financial technologies, quantum computing and human-machine interaction, including machine learning and Natural Language Processing. They would collaborate with institutions such as the University of California, Berkeley through its RISE Lab.

The program, Alibaba said, will be guided by an advisory board comprising researchers and educators from several top universities, including MIT.

The announcement was made by Alibaba Chief Technology Officer Jeff Zhang at the company's Computing Conference 2017 in Hangzhou, China.

Zhang, who will lead the academy, said in a prepared statement that the research program will be "at the forefront of developing next-generation technology that will spur the growth of Alibaba and our partners."

"We are now looking for talented and driven researchers to join us in the quest for new disruptive technologies that would advance our every-day lives, benefit small businesses and narrow the technology gap to make our world a more inclusive place," Zhang added.

Alibaba said the program will help the tech giant fulfill its long-term commitment to serve 2 billion customers and create 100 million jobs in 20 years.

Experts have previously said that China was moving more into the research and development of hardcore, cutting-edge technologies. In September, investment bank Goldman Sachs issued a report saying the world's second-largest economy has emerged as a major contender in using artificial intelligence to drive progress.

Other major Chinese tech companies, such as Baidu and Tencent, have in recent years opened research and development labs around the world to develop new technologies.

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From: Sr K10/11/2017 9:16:35 PM
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On WSJ an hour ago:

The Chinese government is pushing some of its biggest tech companies—including Tencent, Weibo and a unit of Alibaba—to give the state a stake in them and a direct role in corporate decisions.


here's the story

Beijing Pushes for a Direct Hand in China’s Big Tech Firms

Government regulators have discussed stakes in Tencent, Weibo and an Alibaba subsidiary

By Li Yuan

Updated Oct. 11, 2017 7:27 p.m. ET

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From: Glenn Petersen11/2/2017 11:10:16 PM
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Alibaba’s Earnings Jump as China’s Online Shopping Boom Continues

New York Times
NOV. 2, 2017

Alibaba’s headquarters in Hangzhou, China. It has become one of the most highly valued technology companies in the world. Credit Wang He/Getty Images

HONG KONG — When Joseph C. Tsai, the billionaire vice chairman of the Alibaba Group, recently agreed to buy a 49 percent stake in the Brooklyn Nets, it was a sign of the enormous financial success that the company has enjoyed amid China’s e-commerce boom.

A visit to Alibaba’s largest shopping service, however, reveals one of the company’s biggest challenges. Available for purchase there is a wide variety of knockoff Nets merchandise, from jerseys to caps to T-shirts.

Alibaba has become one of the most highly valued technology companies in the world, and its recent string of strong financial results has signaled the continued rise of China’s internet industry and the heartiness of its hundreds of millions of online shoppers.

The company said on Thursday that profit for its most recent quarter more than doubled compared with the same period a year ago, thanks in part to a 61 percent rise in revenue. By comparison, Amazon reported a 34 percent revenue increase for the same quarter.

Still, the results released Thursday show that Alibaba still has ground to cover as it seeks to grow beyond e-commerce into more of a data and technology company. Apart from online shopping, its other businesses lost money.

Bigger and Bigger

Alibaba’s core business continues to be a money-spinner. That business generated nearly $3.6 billion in income during the quarter, about 50 percent more than a year ago. The company says nearly half a billion people now shop on its platforms annually.

Alibaba’s executive vice chairman, Joseph Tsai, recently agreed to buy 49 percent of the Brooklyn Nets — but knockoff Nets merchandise is still easy to find on the group’s shopping sites. Credit Mike Blake/Reuters

Despite worries about a debt binge that could choke economic growth, China’s new consumer class is expanding. That suggests the country’s online-shopping market, already the world’s largest, has room to grow yet. McKinsey estimates that the country’s middle class will expand to 315 million households by 2030, from 116 million households last year. In 2000, China had only two million middle-class households.

Future Bets

Alibaba has ranged far afield of e-commerce in recent years. It owns a movie studio, a soccer club and a Hong Kong newspaper, plus stakes in a variety of tech start-ups. The company is also spending $15 billion over the next several years on research in artificial intelligence and other cutting-edge fields.

In the near term, though, investors are more interested in Alibaba’s recently announced investment of the same amount in logistics. Alibaba has long depended on outside companies to deliver packages. But Jack Ma, the company’s founder and executive chairman, has said his goal is to ship anywhere in China within 24 hours, and anywhere in the world within 72. That will require a lot of spending.

Offline to Online

Alibaba has found ways to make more money from its shopping platforms. For instance, better targeting of ads at customers has helped generate more interest — and sales — from advertisers.

Still, the company also wants to capture more of the 85 percent of retail sales in China that take place offline. Alibaba has been buying stakes in grocers and other brick-and-mortar stores since well before Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods this year.

It has even opened its own grocery stores where purchases are made via smartphone app. These locations serve as hubs for delivering food to nearby homes, while also catering to shoppers who like to pick out fresh items, such as seafood, in person.

Alibaba says it is not interested in building a large grocery chain, however. The company says it wants to showcase the ways traditional retailers can incorporate online tools into their business — with the hope that those retailers will then do so using tools and services provided by Alibaba.

Going Global

Mr. Ma has circled the planet and hobnobbed with world leaders in his effort to take the Alibaba brand global. The company has paid billions of dollars to take control of Lazada, an e-commerce company in Southeast Asia. And Mr. Ma pledged this year that Alibaba would create a million jobs in the United States by linking small American businesses with Chinese shoppers, who tend to view American-made goods as higher quality.

But those efforts are not close to eclipsing Alibaba’s main businesses in China. In the latest quarter, Alibaba’s e-commerce business earned about 90 percent of its revenue at home.

A version of this article appears in print on November 3, 2017, on Page B5 of the New York edition with the headline: E-Commerce Fuels Alibaba Earnings Leap, but Challenges Loom.

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From: Julius Wong11/3/2017 2:42:28 AM
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Alibaba Target Price Raised to $240 by Daiwa

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To: Glenn Petersen who wrote (525)11/3/2017 7:16:49 AM
From: Glenn Petersen
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More detail:

Alibaba Caps $250 Billion Rally With Accelerating Growth

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From: Julius Wong11/6/2017 7:41:08 AM
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Short Sellers Shudder at Alibaba’s Share Surge

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From: JakeStraw11/10/2017 3:30:19 PM
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Alibaba Group Generated Nearly US$12 Billion of GMV in the First Two Hours of the 2017 11.11 Global Shopping Festival

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From: Glenn Petersen11/10/2017 5:06:41 PM
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Potentially significant for BABA:

h/t John P

China's Big Bang Moment Opens Banks, Brokers to Foreign Control

Message 31345218

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