Former CEO Daniel Zhang has abruptly left Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba. Daniel Zhang was scheduled to take over a significant subsidiary on Monday as the company underwent a significant restructure.
Hangzhou-based One of the most well-known technological companies in China is Alibaba, which does business in the fields of cloud computing, e-commerce, logistics, media and entertainment, and artificial intelligence.
After years of turmoil in the Chinese internet industry, Alibaba announced in March the largest restructuring of its history by splitting into six organizations with the intention of listing each one separately on the stock exchange.
On Monday, CEO Daniel Zhang was scheduled to assume leadership of the company’s newly created cloud computing division.
Alibaba, however, announced that his former supervisor was no longer employed by the business two months after his appointment.
“The board of our Company expresses its deepest appreciation to Mr Zhang for his contributions to Alibaba Group over the past 16 years,” the company said in a statement to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, where it is listed, late on Sunday.
It gave no reason for his departure.
Plans for a spin-off cloud computing firm would go ahead, Alibaba said, “under a separate management team to be appointed”.
The company announced in June that Zhang would be replaced by Joseph Tsai as chairman and Eddie Wu as CEO.
The executive, who started the now wildly successful Singles’ Day shopping festival in 2009, was instrumental in the company’s development during the previous ten years.
On Monday, the first working day following the company’s new reorganization into six independent branches, shares of the company fell by almost 3.5 percent.
Alibaba’s influence extends beyond e-commerce and cloud computing to include everything from logistics to media, entertainment, and artificial intelligence.
But when Beijing sought to tighten down on the tech industry, its size put it in the sights of Chinese regulators.
When regulators cancelled what would have been one of the most lucrative public offerings in history for its former subsidiary Ant Group, valued at $34 billion, Alibaba became the first internet behemoth in the nation to feel the weight of tighter oversight.
Alipay, a popular mobile payment tool in China, is owned by Ant Group.
Alibaba was investigated for alleged anti-competitive acts and fined $2.8 billion a month after authorities put the brakes on its IPO.
Authorities also fined Ant Group roughly $1 billion in July for breaking banking laws.