One of the richest men in the world, Jack Ma, founder of Alibaba, has been missing for 2 months
Jack Ma, the billionaire co-founder of Ali Baba, China’s largest e-commerce and cloud computing company, has not been seen in public for two months, fueling speculation that Communist Party officials have “disappeared”.
Worth an estimated $ 48.2 billion, Ma infuriated leaders during an October 24 speech in Shanghai at the Bund summit, when he suggested that China should reform its financial system, Time reported.
The top was bill as “an open, pragmatic and internationally influential high-end financial communications platform”, but apparently it just couldn’t.
In the speech, Ma said that Chinese regulators are stifling innovation and that Chinese banks suffer from a “pawnshop mentality,” relying on a system of “pledges and guarantees” like the informal lenders of the United States. past.
On November 2, Chinese authorities called Ma for questioning. The next day, its previously approved $ 37 billion IPO was canceled, which was supposed to go public with Ant Financial, Alibaba’s fintech arm. At the end of December, regulators had obligatory Ant Group to restructure itself, imposing new anti-monopoly rules and cutting billions of dollars to its valuation.
The Financial Times reported on Friday that Ma was replaced as a judge in the latest episode of “Africa’s Business Heroes,” a game show that gives African entrepreneurs the chance to compete for a prize of $ 1.5 million. Ma’s photos were removed from the show’s website and he was removed from a promotional video for the show.
Twitter, which is banned in China, was full of information about Ma’s absence in the public eye. This is not the case on social networks in mainland China, where sensitive topics are censored, Reuters reported.
Where Ma is is a mystery, India today reported. A spokesperson for Alibaba told the Financial Times that Ma was excluded from the show’s last episode due to a “scheduling conflict.”
“You are allowed and encouraged to criticize the US government. This is not the case in China, ”tweeted Nick Walker.
“In the United States, we don’t kill billionaires, we give them tax breaks and give them more power than the government. both directions suck, ”another tweeted.
Some on Twitter have wondered how a man as rich as Jack Ma couldn’t stand up to the Chinese government. “With the amount of money he has, you would think he would have systems in place to protect him from the Chinese state.”
“It’s always difficult for government-controlled economies to embark on capitalism,” Gregory Paul tweeted. “It’s not organic change, and it tends to produce a class of oligarchs who rise too high and get brought down by the government. The same has happened in Russia, Cuba, Venezuela.
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Zelda Fitzgerald took a longer-term view, tweeting, “The CCP has seen how much more power the American corporatocracy has than our government – they will do anything to make sure that doesn’t happen to them. “
If Ma has fallen out of favor, he’s fallen a long way, Charlie Campbell reported for Time. “Being somewhat of a global business celebrity, he was tacitly tasked by the Chinese Communist Party with projecting a modern and vibrant image for the country’s entrepreneurs,” Campbell wrote.
A former schoolteacher, Ma transformed Alibaba from a 20-employee company that started in his apartment in 1999 to a tech giant that made $ 71.985 billion in revenue during the fiscal year ending March 31, 2020.
Forbes ranked Ma China’s richest person on its 2020 rich list and # 17 among richest billionaires in the world.