Jack Ma’s Worth and Influence

What does Jack Ma, Founder and Executive Chairman of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. (BABA), worth it? As of August 5, 2022, Jack Ma’s net worth was $35.4 billion as the 34th richest person in the world, according to a Bloomberg article.

Much of Ma’s wealth is tied to Alibaba. He had the biggest majority stake in the company and its subsidiaries, although he sold his shares over time. In July 2020, he sold $8.2 billion worth of additional shares, most recently leaving him with a 4.8% stake in the company. The company’s roots date back to 1995, when Ma and his wife started a site building company called China Yellow Pages. Less than five years later, Ma co-founded Alibaba with 17 friends in Hangzhou.

Alibaba’s holdings now include outright ownership and/or significant stakes in a film studio, venture capital funds, Yahoo! China, health technology manufacturers, internet and voice messaging apps, supply chain management companies, taxi app services, video streaming sites, social media apps and online clothing retailers.

Ma stepped down as chairman of Alibaba on September 10, 2019, his 55th birthday, as part of a long-running succession plan.

When a person does Forbes‘ The list of billionaires in the world, investors are naturally interested in what they invest in.

Buffet style investment

With a wide range of investments spread across a number of different companies and sectors, Ma’s transaction and diversification network is often compared to that of warren buffet of Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE: BRK) renamed. Ma is a prolific investor who does not hesitate to finance all stages of a business, from seed funding to established business. Much of his investments were made through Yunfeng Capital or various front companies.

my workbench venture capital firm Yunfeng Capital with four partners in 2010. The five directors are known as “Zhejiang Gang”, referring to the province where they were born. Yunfeng, invests in start-up companies in a number of industries; almost all companies are located in China. Yunfeng’s investment sectors include:

  • Health care (the fund, for example, invested 200 million RMB in China Resources Wandong Medical Equipment Co. Ltd. [Shanghai: 600055.SS]medical device manufacturer),
  • Insurance ($1.7 billion worth of shares of China Taiping Insurance Holdings Company Limited [HKSE: 0966.HK])
  • Mass media
  • Clean energy
  • Consumer goods
  • Finance (with a 56% stake in REORIENT Group Limited (HKSE: 0376.HK), an ETI brokerage located in Hong Kong)
  • Technology
  • Internet products and services

Private investments

Not all of Ma’s funds are invested in public companies; much of his wealth is invested privately, through various relationships and holding companies. One such private equity fund is Star Capital, which invests in various business sectors including immovable, in China and throughout Europe. Star Capital is majority controlled by Fosun International. Much of Alibaba’s financial services business, including Alipay, is overseen by another holding company controlled by Ma and other investors.

In 2014, Jack Ma and several other investors invested $1 billion to buy a 20% stake in Wasu Media, (Shenzhen: 000156.SZ). While this transaction may seem quite simple, a closer look at how the transaction was structured revealed a somewhat complex arrangement.

The Hangzhou Yunxi Investment Partnership Enterprise, which made the investment on behalf of its three partners, including Ma, is controlled by three separate entities. One of them, Hangzhou Yun Huang Investment Management, is 99% controlled by Ma, with the remaining 1% held by Simon Xie. The $1 billion loan was granted to Xie by Alibaba and then invested in the Yunxi partnership to purchase Wasu shares. Taking a very circuitous route, Ma was personally investing in Wasu and his appetite for media.

Media, Sports and Entertainment

Entertainment company Huayi Brothers (Shenzhen: 300027.SZ), originally established in 1994, is just one example of Ma. Yunfeng’s growing interest in Chinese internet giant Tencent Holdings Limited ( OTC: TCTZF) and Huayi bought majority stakes there through an empty contract. shell company called China Jiuhao Health Industry Corporation Limited (HKSE: 0419.HK).

In January 2019, Alibaba’s Pictures Group (a subsidiary of Alibaba) provided a $1 million loan to Huayi Brothers. In return, Huayi pledged to produce 10 theatrical films over the next five years, prioritizing Alibaba Pictures as a potential investor, distributor and dealer.

In 2015, Yunfeng participated in a $129 million first round of funding for Le TV Sports, a young sports rights and streaming company, which then secured $1.2 billion in Series B funding in 2016.

Causes of Jack Ma

Ma is a charismatic, flamboyant and energetic leader, and his influence in business and leadership has been recognized by various organizations. He was named one of the most influential people in the world by Time Magazine in 2009, Asian Philanthropy Heroes 2010 by Forbes Asia, and one of the top 30 in the world CEOs by Barron’s in 2008.

His influence has transcended business into social causes, primarily environmental. Ma has been a board member of The Nature Conservancy in China since 2010. He has taken on the shark fishing industry, pledging to end the consumption of shark fin dishes and s working to end the trade in shark fins and other shark products. on Alibaba.

A small (but significant in absolute value) percentage of Alibaba’s profits is allocated to fund environmental causes. Ma has also begun to sound the alarm (albeit cautiously) about the environmental impact of China’s rapid development. industrial economy. He advocates for China to take steps to further diversify its economy and reduce its dependence on manufacturing.

Ma is an active advocate for the fair treatment of women and advancement in business. At Alibaba, six of the eighteen founding partners are women and five of the fourteen members of the management team are women. He said so, adding proudly: “We have a lot of female CEOs, financial directorsdirectors, etc.”

He also aims to use his influence to encourage and advance fledgling business owners. “For the rest of my life, I want to encourage entrepreneurshipto help more small and medium enterprises”, he said. He also flirts with the idea of ​​returning to his academic roots – he graduated from the Hangzhou Teachers’ Institute – one day. “I want to go back to school because I I was trained to be a teacher,” Ma said. “I’ve been in business for 15 years, and I think most of the things I learned in business school aren’t right. I want to go back and share with others.”

Expanding access to capital through Alibaba

Ma also suggests that various companies in Alibaba have a philanthropic bent. In 2016, he coined the term “TechFin” as a way to not only distinguish the company’s Alipay payment platform from competitors, but also to emphasize the company’s goal of providing young, small businesses and poor countries access to Capital city.

He wants Alibaba, already the biggest in the world e-commerce platform, to also be the benchmark financier for Emerging Markets. And the company’s Alipay e-wallet service, which has more than 600 million users, will serve as the backbone of Ma’s payment platform expansion efforts.

“fintech takes the original financial system and improves its technology,” Ma said at a 2016 China conference hosted by the South China Morning Post (SCMP). “TechFin is about rebuilding the system with technology. What we want to do is solve the problem of the lack of inclusiveness.

The South China Morning Post, an Alibaba-owned publication, quoted Ma as saying, “Everyone should have a bank account.” To that end, Alibaba’s financial services subsidiary, Ant Financial Services Group (which runs Alipay), has begun to focus on emerging markets such as India, the Philippines and Malaysia, regions considered underserved. , compared to established markets like Europe and the United States. .

Ant also leads Yu’E Bao, a Money market funds launched in 2013 which offers more interest on savings and greater liquidity than many traditional Chinese banks.

As for how Alipay and the concept of “TechFin” stack up against existing payment platforms, Ma described his ambition as being less about competition and more about solving a problem. “That’s not a business model competition… getting a business model is simple if you really solve a big problem and create value. An article from the South China Morning Post quotes him. “In India, we have over 150 million users who can run mobile payments within 20 months. This [enabling the poor to have bank accounts] is something we are proud of.

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