Alibaba’s $36.19 billion quarterly revenue is less than expected

Alibaba Group Holding, a Chinese company, released its third-quarter financial results, which were below experts’ projections because of difficulties in the retail industry and a slow recovery in the national economy. In spite of this disappointment, premarket trading for the company’s U.S.-listed shares increased by 3.5% on the announcement of a $25 billion extension of its share repurchase programme through March 2027.

Last March, Alibaba initiated a restructuring effort, dividing its business into six units under the guidance of CEO Eddie Wu and Chairman Joe Tsai, both co-founders of the company. Wu, who assumed the role of Group CEO in September, has emphasised a strategic shift towards prioritising user experience and implementing AI-driven solutions to counteract slowing earnings growth.

After the loosening of pandemic restrictions more than a year ago, Alibaba has had a slow recovery in China’s online retail business, which presents obstacles. Low-cost domestic e-commerce platforms like Pinduoduo have benefited from consumers’ inclination towards cost-cutting tactics as they grapple with economic uncertainties. Alibaba has therefore stepped up its efforts to provide more reasonably priced products and to give discounts.

Because of uncertainty around U.S. limits on chip exports to China, Alibaba scrapped plans last year to spin out its cloud company. Its logistics division, Cainiao, has also submitted an application to list in Hong Kong. Moreover, a number of stories that surfaced last week indicated Alibaba’s intention to sell off assets in the consumer industry, such as RT-Mart, Intime, and Freshippo.

Alibaba reported revenue of 260.35 billion yuan ($36.19 billion) for the quarter ending December 31, falling short of the 262.28 billion yuan forecasted by analysts. Despite these challenges, the company remains committed to navigating the evolving market landscape and pursuing strategic initiatives to drive future growth.

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