Alibaba downplays its giant fine imposed by Beijing, action soars

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Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba on Monday put into perspective the consequences of its € 2.3 billion fine for abuse of dominance, while its shares soared on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, with hopes that a page has been touring.

Alibaba, China's symbol of success in the digital economy, has been under investigation by authorities since December for suspicion of monopoly practices.

Regulators ruled on Saturday that the group founded by charismatic billionaire Jack Ma was in violation and ordered the company to pay a heavy fine.

Alibaba has been criticized in particular for requiring the exclusivity of merchants wishing to sell their products on its platforms, to the detriment of competing e-commerce sites.

We sincerely accept this sanction and will adhere to it firmly.Group executive vice president Joe Tsai said on a conference call.

We have benefited from expert advice from regulators on specific issues under the anti-monopoly law. We are happy to be able to turn the page, Mr. Tsai said.

The amount of the fine represents 4% of Alibaba's 2019 revenue, which was 455.7 billion yuan (58.45 billion euros), according to the New China news agency.

The fine will not have negative consequences on the affairs of Alibaba, assured for his part in front of the investors its CEO, Daniel Zhang.

The group has promised to lower its operating costs for traders on its platforms.

Reassured investors

Words that have, it seems, reassured investors: Alibaba's shares took up nearly 9% Monday morning on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, where the group is listed in addition to that of New York.

Steps Alibaba will need to take to comply with regulators are likely to limit growth of its income and will weigh on its profit, estimates in a note the American rating agency Moody's.

Billionaire Jack Ma, who officially retired from Alibaba in 2019 but remains a large shareholder, has been in the sights of the authorities for several months.

In November 2020, Chinese regulators halted at the last minute a colossal $ 34 billion IPO by Ant Group, an Alibaba subsidiary in online payments.

Worried about its influence, Beijing has also reportedly asked the e-commerce giant to divest assets in the media sector, reported last month. Wall Street Journal (WSJ).

Read also :

  • Beijing issues record fine on Alibaba for monopoly practices
  • Where's Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba?
  • China brings its digital giants to heel
  • (Analysis) China, between international assertiveness and internal fragilities

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