Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE:BABA) reiterates “customers first” and “investors third” mantra. On September 19, when the company shares got listed on NYSE exchange, Ma said that the company’s top priority will always remain customers. The second place is occupied by employees and then comes the investors. Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) listing on NASDAQ was stained by aggressive pricing and technical glitch, and, therefore, Alibaba chose NYSE platform to list in the U.S.
The shareholders should earn, but it is the customers who create value for shareholders. The investors don’t have a long-term vision, and therefore they can never be the top priority of the company. He gave second place to employees as they are the people responsible for customer satisfaction. Coming to shareholders, there are no external shareholders who can threaten the control of Ma on Alibaba. SoftBank Corp. has 32.4% stake in the company and Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) holds 15% stake in Alibaba Group Holding.
No matter Alibaba placed shareholders on third position, still it left no stone unturned to provide hefty returns to its investors. Its IPO on NYSE raised record $25 billion surpassing the $22 billion record of Agricultural Bank of China Ltd. made in year 2010. Alibaba’s shares price surged more than 38% on debut day. Ma is now among the 25 richest individuals in the world. With a $29.7 billion fortune, he is on eighteenth position.
Ladder of success
Ma’s $60,000 investment has made Alibaba more valuable than Facebook. Also, it has become a much larger company than eBay Inc (NASDAQ:EBAY) and Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) combined. Among tech companies, only Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) and Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) had larger market values than Alibaba. Its market capitalization now stands at $282.4 billion overtaking both Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) and General Electric Company (NYSE:GE) to become the seventh biggest company in the world.
The future ahead
As per Bill Clinton, Ma has the capabilities to deal with the environmental and social problems of China. He can change the existing landscape of the country. As of now, there are around 632 million people in China who uses the internet. Out of the 332 million citizens who shop online, 279 million are active Alibaba buyers, as reported by the company in its pre-IPO filings. It disclosed that the active buyers figure rose to 307 million in the second quarter. Ma wants to expand beyond China and in the same direction has created websites in Russian, Portuguese and English language. Alibaba has already become popular in Russia and Brazil, and the focus now shifts on expansion in the U.S.