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Jack Ma will quit Alibaba chairmanship in 2019

By Chen Liubing | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2018-09-10 09:24
Jack Ma, founder and chairman of Alibaba Group. [Photo/IC]

Jack Ma, founder and chairman of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba will leave his position as company chairman on Sept 10, 2019, according to an official announcement today. CEO Daniel Zhang Yong will take over then.

Ma will stay as board member of Alibaba after that date until the company's annual general meeting of stockholders in 2020, the announcement said. Besides acting as partner of Alibaba, Ma will focus on public welfare and educational business, he said in an open letter to the public on Sept 10, a meaningful day — Ma's birthday, the founding day of Alibaba and also China's Teacher's Day.

After graduating from Hangzhou Normal University, Ma always saw himself as a teacher. "Starting a business was only incidental. My biggest dream lies in education," he said.

Alibaba Group co-founder and chairman Jack Ma speaks during a news conference in Hong Kong, China, June 25, 2018. [Photo/VCG]

Ma has been preparing for this succession plan for 10 years. Alibaba created a partnership then to provide solutions for company creativity, leader succession and culture succession issues. This enables the company's healthy development by combining the system, the people and the culture, he said.

"We can only solve the problem of enterprise succession and development by setting up a system and forming a unique culture and cultivate talent as potential successors," Ma said in the open letter. "And we never ceased practicing to achieve this."

Based on this new co-partnership, Ma believes Alibaba has the ability to handle the transfer of power, and also indicated the company has upgraded from an individual-dependent enterprise into a company with a dependable system and talent pool.

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