More change at Alibaba as Ant Financial appoints Simon Hu as CEO

Simon Hu has been appointed chief executive of Ant Financial in a boardroom shuffle.

Alibaba, the world’s biggest retailer and its FinTech affiliate Ant Financial announced a raft of changes at boardroom level on Thursday amid an ongoing restructuring.

READ MORE: Alibaba shares skyrocket after Hong Kong listing success

Ant Financial named Simon Hu as its new chief executive, replacing Eric Jing.

Jing will remain executive chairman of Ant Financial, a position he held concurrently with his chief executive role.

Hu joined Alibaba back in 2005 and served as president of Ant Financial since November 2018.

He will know report to Jing.

Ant Financial is the highest valued FinTech company in the world, and the world’s most valuable start-up company, with a valuation of $150 billion (£115.2 billion).

Alibaba founder Jack Ma set up Ant Financial (previously known as Alipay) in 2004 as the main way for Alibaba shoppers to pay for goods.

Ant Financial chief technology officer Cheng Li will replace Jeff Zhang as the chief technology officer of Alibaba, according to an internal company letter seen by Reuters.

Jeff Zhang will remain the chairman of the Alibaba Technology Committee, Dean of Alibaba’s DAMO Academy and president of Alibaba Cloud Intelligence, the letter added, which was written and signed by Alibaba Group chief executive Daniel Zhang.

The letter also mentioned that Jiang Fan, president of Alibaba’s Taobao and Tmall e-commerce sites, will also oversee the company’s Alimama advertising unit.

“From where we stand today, we can clearly see the need for multiple business groups to have complex collaborations in each of our strategic pillars in order to win success,” Daniel Zhang wrote in the memo reported by Reuters.

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