Alibaba to expand stock buyback by $25 billion, as prices ebb
Published: Mar 22, 2022 05:16 PM

Alibaba's headquarters in Hangzhou, East China's Zhejiang Province Photo: cnsphoto

Alibaba's headquarters in Hangzhou, East China's Zhejiang Province Photo: cnsphoto

Alibaba Group on Tuesday expanded its share buyback program to a record $25 billion amid a stock price plunge earlier this month. It is also the biggest stock buyback by a listed Chinese company.

On Wednesday, fresh impetus was drawn from a meeting of the State Council's Financial Stability and Development Committee which pledged to shore up the equities markets, giving the markets a much-needed confidence boost, analysts said.

A result from the meeting is that stocks on the A-share and H-share markets and Chinese shares listed at the US market continued to rebound since Wednesday.

Alibaba's share price ended at HK$110.2 ($14.08) on the Hong Kong market on Tuesday, up 54.7 percent from March 15. Its US-listed stock price ended at $103.59 on Monday, up 35.1 percent from $76.76 on March 15.

Alibaba Group announced the company's board has authorized the massive stock buyback program of $25 billion, in a sign of confidence about the company's continued growth in the future, according to a statement sent to the Global Times on Tuesday.

The Share Buyback Program will be effective for a two-year period through March 2024. As of March 18, 2022, Alibaba had purchased a total of 56.2 million American depositary shares (ADS) under the previously announced share buyback program, at approximately $9.2 billion, Alibaba confirmed.

Alibaba's share price on the US stock market has risen 14 percent since its US IPO in September 2014, giving up most of the 370-percent gain the company had generated at its peak in the autumn of 2020.

Alibaba remains one of the world's largest e-commerce companies and its financial position remains solid, the company said. Revenue for the first nine months of fiscal 2022, ending March 31, was 649 billion yuan ($102 billion), up 23 percent year-on-year.

Alibaba on Tuesday also announced that Shan Weijian, executive chairman of investment group PAG, was appointed as an independent director to the company's board, effective from March 31.

"Alibaba served about 1 billion consumers in China and 300 million around the world in 2021 alone. I feel honored to be invited by the board to serve as an independent director," said Shan.

Global Times