China's richest man Jack Ma will retire on Monday

China's richest man Jack Ma will retire on Monday

China's richest man Jack Ma will retire on Monday

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd's (BABA.N) billionaire co-founder Jack Ma will announce a succession plan on Monday to hand the reins of his sprawling empire to a new generation of leaders but will remain executive chairman for the time being.

The company went public on the New York Stock Exchange in 2014 and has a market value of about $421 billion.

Ma, who boasts a net worth of almost $40 billion(€34 billion), making him China's richest man, said he would use his retirement to focus on his philanthropic work, mainly around education.

"There's a lot of things I can learn from Bill Gates", he said.

Ma's Bloomberg interview came as shares of China's second-largest e-commerce company, JD.com, plummeted as its CEO Li Qiangdong was arrested in the USA over an accusation of rape. "I can never be as rich, but one thing I can do better is to retire earlier", Ma said during an interview last week with Bloomberg Television.

Alibaba is active in sectors across the Chinese economy and has transformed many.

Like Gates, he has created his own eponymous foundation - the Jack Ma Foundation - which he says will push his original calling: education. According to Chinese media outlets, he belongs to a family which used to get just United States $ 40 each month to take care of its needs.Yet, Ma managed to graduate from Hangzhou Teachers College with a major in English-language education. Despite leaving day-to-day operations, Ma will remain on the board and mentor Alibaba's management.

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Alibaba was founded by 18 people led by Ma.

Ma said his retirement is not the end of an era but "the beginning of an era". "This is something I think I can do much better than being CEO of Alibaba".

For Alibaba, Ma's retirement completes a transition of power to other executives.

Considered China's richest person, the e-commerce company's co-founder holds a spot in the world's top twenty billionaires in the world with a reported net worth of $39.9 billion.

"It doesn't matter how big or small your contribution is, and it doesn't mean you have to do something big or be someone important to do philanthropy", Ma Said recently at Alibaba's conference on philanthropy, in Hangzhou.

Earlier this year regulators shot down a $1.2-billion bid for money transfer service Moneygram International Inc by Ant Financial on national security grounds, which the company said was related to "geopolitical" changes.

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