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Alibaba's Jack Ma makes first public appearance since October last year

SHANGHAI: Alibaba Group founder Jack Ma met with 100 rural teachers in China via a video meeting on Wednesday, local government media reported, making the businessman's first appearance in public since October last year.

Tianmu News, a news portal under Zhejiang Online, a government-backed news website, reported the meeting on Wednesday.

Ma has resurfaced after months out of public view, quashing intense speculation about the plight of the billionaire grappling with escalating scrutiny over his internet empire.

Chinese regulators have zeroed in on Ma's businesses since his October speech including launching an antitrust probe into Alibaba and ordering Ant to shake up its lending and other consumer finance businesses including the creation of a separate holding company to meet capital requirements.

China is said to have separately set up a joint task force to oversee Ant, led by the Financial Stability and Development Committee, a financial system regulator, along with various departments of the central bank and other regulators.

The group is in regular contact with Ant to collect data and other materials, studying its restructuring as well as drafting other rules for the fintech industry.

 

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