Alibaba’s revenue beats estimates; mobile revenue soars

Alibaba’s total revenue rose to 32.15 billion yuan, or $4.84 billion, in the quarter ended 30 June from 20.25 billion yuan a year earlier


Alibaba’s mobile revenue increased 119.3% to 17.51 billion yuan, while monthly mobile active users increased 39%. Photo: Reuters
Alibaba’s mobile revenue increased 119.3% to 17.51 billion yuan, while monthly mobile active users increased 39%. Photo: Reuters

Bengaluru: Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd reported a better-than-expected 59% jump in quarterly revenue on Thursday, defying a slowdown in the Chinese economy.

Alibaba’s total revenue rose to 32.15 billion yuan, or $4.84 billion, in the quarter ended 30 June from 20.25 billion yuan a year earlier. Analysts on average had expected revenue of 30.17 billion yuan, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Mobile revenue from the company’s China commerce retail business increased 119.3% to 17.51 billion yuan, while monthly mobile active users increased 39%.

“We passed an important milestone this quarter in achieving higher monetization of mobile users than non-mobile users for the first time,” chief financial officer Maggie Wu said.

The company said its gross merchandise volume (GMV)—the value of transactions carried out by third-party sellers on the company’s platforms—rose 24.4% to 837 billion yuan.

Alibaba said in June it would in the future only release GMV figures on an annual basis. The change followed the disclosure that the US Securities and Exchange Commission was looking into the company’s accounting practices.

The company, whose shares were up 4.8% in pre-market trading, said in June that it expected to nearly double its transaction volumes by 2020.

The business is seen as a future growth driver for Alibaba, but contributed just 2% of overall revenue in the quarter.

Paying customers in Alibaba’s cloud computing business increased to 577,000 from 263,000 a year earlier, boosting revenue by 156%.

Net income attributable to shareholders fell to 7.14 billion yuan, or 2.94 yuan per share, from 30.82 billion yuan, or 11.92 yuan per share, in the year-earlier quarter.

Facing the prospect of a saturated online retail market in China, Alibaba has been looking to grow outside its home base.

The company bought Singapore-based online retailer Lazada Group for about $1 billion in April, giving it a greater presence in South-east Asia.

It has also been investing in a diverse array of other businesses, including cloud services provider Aliyun and driverless vehicles, hoping they can become an eventual source of growth.

Up to Wednesday’s close of $87.33, Alibaba’s shares had risen 7.46% since the start of the year. Reuters

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