On the eve of its IPO, somewhere in September, Chinese eCommerce giant Alibaba has revealed impressive growth numbers for its most recent quarter: nearly 50 % more turnover and net profit tripled.
Mobile represents a third of turnover
The quarterly numbers were presented to the American Securities and Exchange Commission, as a part of its impending IPO. From April to June, Alibaba's turnover grew 46 % to 2.5 billion dollars (1.9 billion euro). Net profit reached 1.99 billion dollars (1.5 billion euro), nearly three times as much as last year.
Smartphone use of its online markets boomed a lot: from 190 million dollar (145 million euro) in turnover in the previous quarter, to nearly 400 million dollars (300 million euro) now. Nearly a third of all transactions are handled through mobile platforms.
Alibaba's number of customers is also in the rise: it has 279 million active users, 9 % more than in the previous quarter and nearly 50 % more than the same quarter last year.
Competitor on the horizon?
These numbers are probably president Jack Ma's perfect scenario on the eve of its long-awaited IPO. With an estimated 20 billion dollar return, it should become the largest IPO ever in the United States. It will also solidify Ma's position as the wealthiest Chinese person alive. Bloomberg believes he is already worth some 21.8 billion dollars (more than 16 billion euro).
That does not mean he does not have any worries: Alibaba will probably get a serious competitor on its hands as three fellow Chinese billionaires (owners of real estate and entertainment group Wanda, the Baidu search engine and technology company Tencent) have created a joint venture. The three gentlemen have invested 813 million dollars (nearly 620 million euro) into the new company.
The new platform will use the Baidu search engine to find products and services that are available at Wanda's shopping and leisure centres, while enabling payment through Tencent's online payment service, Tenpay. The challengers have plenty of money to back up their attack: their joint value is almost 36.5 billion euro. It is a warning sign for both Alibaba and Jack Ma...