Alibaba restructures e-commerce divisions


Chinese web giant Alibaba is reorganising its e-commerce operations to accelerate its international growth. The company also appointed a new chief financial officer.


Becoming more agile

Alibaba is splitting its e-commerce activities into two digital divisions. The International Digital Commerce division, led by Jiang Fan, will now oversee operations in international markets. This includes AliExpress, and Lazada. The China Digital Commerce division focuses on the domestic market and will be led by Trudy Dai.


“We want to explore new business governance approaches to drive more innovation and creativity across our teams and businesses," CEO Zhang said in a press release. The new organisational structure, which gives local teams more power and autonomy, should make the company more agile. The top executive also wants to focus even more strongly on international growth: “We will continue to focus on becoming a truly globalized company, and we believe that overseas markets present many exciting potential and opportunities for us to capture.”


Management change

At the same time, the company is announcing a management change. Toby Xu will succeed Maggie Wu as CFO as of 1 April. Wu has worked for Alibaba for 15 years and became chief financial officer in 2013. Among other things, she was closely involved in the billion-dollar company's listings in New York and Hong Kong. Wu will remain on Alibaba's board of directors.


Her replacement, 48-year-old Xu, joined Alibaba three years ago as special assistant to CEO Zhang. He played a key role in several deals for the company, including a partnership with Hong Kong-based retail giant Fung Group. In July 2019, he was appointed as a deputy CFO and is currently responsible for Alibaba investments such as Sun Art Retail Group and Lianhua Supermarket Holdings.