Alibaba, the Chinese conglomerate, announced a major reshuffle at the top on Monday, as the country tightens its grip on domestic Big Tech companies over data and internet regulations.
Toby Xu, the Company’s Deputy Chief Financial Officer, will take over as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) on April 1, 2022, succeeding Maggie Wu.
Wu will remain a partner in the Alibaba Partnership and an Executive Director on the Alibaba board, according to a statement from the company.
“Going forward, Maggie will leverage her deep experience to support Alibaba in new ways. We will continue to benefit from her guidance and insights in her continued role as an Alibaba board director,” said Daniel Zhang, Chairman and CEO of Alibaba Group.
Since joining Alibaba nearly 15 years ago, Wu has played a key role in three successful company public listings: Alibaba.com on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in 2007, Alibaba Group Holding on the New York Stock Exchange in 2014, and Alibaba Group Holding on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in 2019.
Xu joined Alibaba three years ago from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and was named Deputy Group CFO in July 2019.
“The markets will always have ups and downs, but Alibaba has ambitious long-term goals. We are in a relay race and we must have new generations of talent to take the company forward,” said Wu.
In an internal letter, Zhang announced major reorganisation plans to strengthen Alibaba’s domestic and international e-commerce strategies.
Alibaba, which was founded in 1999, underwent a major reorganisation when Jack Ma handed over the CEO reins to Zhang in 2015 and appointed him Chairman in 2019.
Last month, China’s market regulator fined tech giants Alibaba, Baidu, Tencent, and e-commerce platform JD.com Inc and Suning for violating the country’s anti-monopoly rules in 34 mergers and acquisitions (M&A) deals in which they failed to declare illegal implementation of operating concentration, marking the latest move in the country’s fight against monopoly.
Since the beginning of this year, the State Administration for Market Regulation (SAMR) has fined a slew of companies, primarily in the internet platform sector, for monopolistic behaviour such as making mergers and acquisitions without seeking regulatory approval in advance and allowing merchants to “choose one from two,” which must be corrected as the country ramps up anti-monopoly efforts to ensure fair market competition, according to Global Times.