Alibaba gains one third of Ant Financial’s stake, sets out five-year goals

NEW YORK (Xinhua) – Chinese e-commerce titan Alibaba announced on Tuesday that it has gained a newly issued 33 per cent equity interest in its fintech affiliate Ant Financial and set out its five-year goals for China consumer business.

The stake transaction closed out a profit-sharing agreement inked between the two firms in 2014, which had required Ant Financial to pay 37.5 per cent of its pre-tax profits to Alibaba. Wall Street widely believed that the announced deal would nudge Ant Financial closer to a potential initial public offering, as the fintech firm has been considered as one of the world’s most valuable startups.

By the end of the fiscal 2024, Alibaba aims to serve over one billion annual active consumers and achieve over CNY10 trillion (USD1.4 trillion) in annual gross merchandise volume (GMV) through its China consumer business, which mainly covers its China retail marketplaces, digital media and entertainment, as well as local consumer services, the company said in a statement.

The company has approximately 860 million annual active consumers globally for the 12 months ended June 30, said Alibaba Group Executive Chairman and CEO Daniel Zhang at the company’s annual Investor day in Hangzhou, capital city of east China’s Zhejiang Province.

It noted that the five-year goals will help better realise the company’s blueprint to serve two billion customers and support 10 million small and medium-sized enterprises.

It will also help create 100 million jobs by 2036.