Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - SCMP: Jack Ma to unveil plans to name successor

SCMP: Jack Ma to unveil plans to name successor

SCMP: Jack Ma to unveil plans to name successor

Alibaba co-founder and chairman Jack Ma will unveil a succession plan on Monday, the South China Morning Post reported Sunday, with a company spokesman denying a New York Times report that he would retire that day.

The SCMP, which is owned by Alibaba, said China’s most famous tech billionaire will “unveil a succession strategy” on Monday – his 54th birthday – but remain the company’s executive chairman for the foreseeable future.

The New York Times ran an article on Friday, based on an interview with Ma, saying the former teacher turned billionaire planned to use his birthday to announce his retirement as chairman of Alibaba to focus on philanthropy.

The paper quoted Ma as saying the decision was “the beginning of an era”.

But an Alibaba spokesman told the SCMP that the New York Times’ story “was taken out of context, and factually wrong”.

“An Alibaba spokesman said Ma remains the company’s executive chairman and will provide transition plans over a significant period of time,” the SCMP wrote.

The paper added that the Monday succession strategy was part of a plan “for grooming a generation of younger executives to take over the reins” of the company.

Eileen Murphy, a spokesperson for the New York Times, said the newspaper stood by its story.

Ma was an English teacher before starting Alibaba in 1999 and built it into a multibillion-dollar internet colossus, becoming one of the world’s richest men and a revered figure in his homeland.

His own worth has soared along with that of the company, which has added cloud computing, films and e-payments to its growing portfolio and was valued at $420.8 billion when the stock market closed on Friday.

The New York Times’ report surprised many in the global business community because of Ma’s comparative youth, especially in China where it is not unusual for tycoons to remain in place into their eighties.

Alibaba did not return requests for comment on Saturday after the story ran.

In an interview with Bloomberg TV released on Friday, Ma hinted at his retirement plans, saying he wanted to follow in the footsteps of Microsoft founder Bill Gates, one of the world’s most prolific philanthropists.

MOST VIEWED

  • Massive stingrays may live in Mekong’s deep pools

    US scientists have suggested that unexplored deep pools in the Mekong River in an area of Stung Treng could potentially be home to significant populations of giant freshwater stingrays, one of the world’s largest freshwater fish species. This comes as a fisherman hooked a 180

  • CCC team off on US business trip

    The Kingdom’s leading economists and private sector representatives have called on the US to renew its tax preferential status for Cambodian exports, as a Cambodia Chamber of Commerce (CCC) delegation departed for a weeklong business visit to the US, where they will meet with

  • PM takes time to meet, greet Cambodians living in the US

    After landing in the US ahead of the ASEAN-US Special Summit, Prime Minister Hun Sen was received by over 1,000 Cambodian-Americans including political analysts who welcomed him with greetings, fist bumps and selfies. Hun Sen also met with analyst Mak Hoeun, who had allegedly spoken ill

  • Khmer cinema classics back on big screen for free at WB Arena’s outdoor movies series

    On a recent Saturday evening at WB Arena, Bunsong was enjoying a tasty BBQ meal with his family after work on the long tables that had been arranged out in front of the restaurant as they watched a Khmer action movie on a big outdoor

  • PM heads to Washington for ASEAN-US special summit

    Regional and international issues and how to bring the ASEAN-US partnership to another level will be discussed at length as Prime Minister Hun Sen and his ministers arrive in Washington, DC, for a special summit on May 12-13. During the trip, Hun Sen and ASEAN

  • National Assembly refutes EU resolution

    The National Assembly (NA) has hit back at a European Parliament resolution condemning the political and human rights situation in Cambodia, calling it another display of the Parliament’s “double standards”. Key points of the resolution include a warning that the Parliament could exclude the