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Alibaba to Spin Off Cainiao Logistics Unit for Hong Kong IPO

September 27, 2023: Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba said Tuesday that it would spin off its logistics arm, Cainiao Smart Logistics Network. Post-spinoff, Alibaba will retain over 50% of Cainiao’s shares. This act represents one of Alibaba’s most significant restructuring initiatives. In March, the company announced a division into six distinct business units, most of which would be permitted to seek external funding and pursue public offerings. Cainiao is the inaugural entity among these businesses to file for an initial public offering (IPO) officially.

However, Alibaba acknowledges that there is no certainty regarding the completion of this proposed spinoff.

Alibaba has reported that the Hong Kong Stock Exchange has approved the Cainiao listing to proceed, but the exchange has refrained from commenting on specific listings.

 Details concerning share pricing and the anticipated listing date have yet to be disclosed.

Established in 2013, Cainiao operates as a logistics network that aids Alibaba in fulfilling orders placed on its e-commerce platforms, domestically and internationally. Alibaba aims to meet customer orders within 24 hours in China and 72 hours else where. The company acquired a majority stake in Cainiao in 2017, and as of Tuesday, it maintains a nearly 70% ownership interest. Speedy delivery has become a competitive aspect among Chinese e-commerce firms, with Alibaba’s rival,, concentrating on same-day delivery to enhance its platform’s appeal to Chinese consumers. Alibaba has emphasized that the IPO will strengthen Cainiao’s independent standing among its clientele, suppliers, and potential strategic partners, enhancing its capacity to negotiate and secure additional business opportunities. Alibaba further asserts that the listing will lead to a more direct alignment of management responsibilities and accountability for both Alibaba and Cainiao about their operational and financial performance.

 These plans for the Cainiao IPO follow Alibaba’s significant leadership reshuffle in June. Eddie Wu took over as CEO after Daniel Zhang’s departure and continued to lead the cloud computing unit before recently exiting that division.

 Alongside Cainiao, Alibaba is also exploring the possibility of listing its cloud computing business, although an official spinoff filing has yet to be made.

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Alibaba to Spin Off Cainiao Logistics Unit for Hong Kong IPO