Daniel Zhang steps down from top Alibaba Group role, new leaders named

Alibaba Group has appointed Joseph C Tsai and Eddie Yongming Wu as the company’s new chairman and CEO respectively, marking the group’s one of the most significant organisational changes. 

The appointments will take effect on September 10. Tsai and Wu will succeed Daniel Zhang, who will continue to lead Alibaba Cloud Intelligence Group as chairman and CEO. 

Joseph C. Tsai, executive vice chairman of Alibaba Group

“This is the right time for me to make a transition, given the importance of Alibaba Cloud Intelligence Group as it progresses towards a full spin-off,” said Daniel Zhang, chairman and CEO of Alibaba Group. “The emergence of generative AI has also opened up exciting new opportunities that Alibaba Cloud Intelligence Group is well-positioned to capture.”

Zhang was named Alibaba CEO in 2015 before he took on the chairmanship in 2019. 

“Daniel has made exceptional contributions to the development of Alibaba Group since joining the company in 2007,” said Tsai, executive vice chairman of Alibaba Group. “He demonstrated extraordinary leadership in navigating unprecedented uncertainties affecting our business over the past few years.” 

Eddie Yongming Wu, chairman of Taobao and Tmall Group

Alibaba Group’s newly appointed CEO Yongming Wu, one of the group’s co-founders aside from Jack Ma and Tsai, will continue to concurrently serve as chairman of Taobao and Tmall Group. Wu was the technology director of Alibaba at the company’s inception in 1999. He founded Vision Plus Capital, a venture capital firm focused on investing in advanced technologies, enterprise services and digital healthcare in 2015. 

“Eddie was instrumental in architecting our technology platforms and guiding our strategic direction,” Tsai said. “He led the creation of our proprietary monetization platform on Taobao and Tmall, and drove the launch of the Mobile Taobao App to propel our company to the mobile-first era.”

The group said last Thursday it is shifting its focus to building local businesses and online platforms outside of China with Europe as the top priority.

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