Embattled Chinese billionaire Jack Ma may divest his Ant Group stake and give up control, reports say
- Jack Ma, founder of
Ant Group, reportedly may give up his stake in the company, Reuters reported.
- Ma's tech empire came under increased scrutiny in the wake of his public comments on regulations.
- Ant Group executives and Chinese regulators are seeking a way forward for the tech giant.
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In the wake of his comments, President Xi Jinping reportedly personally halted a planned $37 billion initial public offering by Ant Group. In meetings before the IPO's cancellation, Ma reportedly offered to give parts of Ant Group to the Chinese government.News of Ma's potential exit came a week after Alibaba Group, also founded by Ma, was hit with a record $2.8 billion fine.
Reuters on Saturday said the decision about whether Ma would exit Ant Group was being discussed in meetings with officials. But an Ant Group spokesperson issued a statement to the outlet, saying Ma's exit "has never been the subject of discussions with anyone."Press reports tracked the whereabouts of Ma as he fell out of favor last fall, including a long period where he seemed to disappear from view altogether. It was later reported by The Financial Times that he'd spent some of that time meeting with regulators. Ma on Wednesday joined Russian leader Vladimir Putin on a video conference, his first public appearance since last weekend's record fine.
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