Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. has increased its $ 4 billion to $ 10 billion share repurchase program, providing more support to stocks plagued by an extensive antitrust inquiry into the country’s most powerful Internet corporations.
Its shares fell more than 5% in early Hong Kong trading to a six-month low. China’s leader in e-commerce said on Monday it had repurchased shares this quarter and the board has allowed the program to increase, which is valid for two years until the end of 2022.
Alibaba and competitors, once considered the standard-bearers of China’s economic and technological growth Tencent Holdings Ltd. is now facing increasing pressure from regulators who are concerned about the speed with which they are gathering hundreds of millions of users and affecting almost every aspect of daily life. Alibaba’s share falls about 30% from its 2020 peak, hit by the deepening investigation and allegations of monopolistic practices to the crown jewel of billionaire Jack Ma’s empire.
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Beijing last week launched an antitrust inquiry into Alibaba and sent officials to Hangzhou headquarters, which was the formal start of the Communist Party’s action against the company that made Ma the country’s most famous entrepreneur. On Sunday, Chinese regulators Mom’s other online titanium order – Ant Group Co. – to return to its roots as a payment service provider, and threaten to reduce the growth of its most profitable businesses in terms of consumer loans and wealth management.
Mom, the flamboyant co-founder of Alibaba and Ant, has almost disappeared from the public eye since Ant’s initial public offering derailed last month. A person familiar with the matter, in early December, advised the man the country most affected by the meteoric rise of China Inc. characterized, to continue.
Those familiar with the situation said Mom was not on the verge of a personal downfall. Rather, his public rebuke is a warning that Beijing has lost patience with the extraordinary power of its technological powerhouses, which are increasingly seen as a threat to the political and financial stability that President Xi Jinping praises the most.
Read more: Jack Ma goes silent after the spectacular undoing of the Ant group