The Strategist

Alibaba ends quarter with loss for first time since IPO

05/14/2021 - 04:16

Chinese online retailer Alibaba posted a net loss of 7.7 billion yuan ($1.2 billion) in the fourth quarter ended at the end of March, compared with a net profit of 7.1 billion yuan ($1.1 billion) a year earlier.

hinglish Notes via flickr
hinglish Notes via flickr
It is the corporation's first quarterly loss since its IPO in 2014. Analysts polled by Refinitiv had forecast a profit of ¥6.95 billion. Alibaba's loss is linked to a record $2.8 billion antitrust fine imposed on the company in March - the company itself forecast that without the fine, profit for the quarter would have increased by 18% year-on-year. Alibaba's revenue for the quarter rose 64 percent to 187.4 billion yuan ($28.6 billion).

The company also reported data for the full fiscal year 2021: net income rose 2% to ¥143.3 billion ($21.9 billion) and revenue was up 41% to ¥717.3 billion ($109.5 billion). Alibaba's number of active users increased by 4% to 811 million over the year.

Since the end of last year, Alibaba has faced increasing pressure from Chinese authorities, part of which was an antitrust investigation into the company and the imposition of a fine following its findings. According to Western media reports, the Chinese authorities are displeased by the critical statements of Alibaba's head Jack Ma, as well as his generally fairly independent stance and growing influence in the country and beyond.