Alibaba Posts Q2 Profit, Not To Proceed With Cloud Unit Spin-off; Stock Dips In Premarket

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holdings Ltd. (BABA) reported Thursday a profit in its second quarter, compared to last year’s loss, with higher revenues.

The company further said it has decided to not proceed with a full spin-off of its Cloud Intelligence Group, and instead will focus on developing a sustainable growth model under the fluid circumstances.

In pre-market activity on the NYSE, BABA shares were losing around 8.5 percent to trade at $79.66.

The company said it now believes that a full spin-off of Cloud Intelligence Group may not achieve the intended effect of shareholder value enhancement, noting that the recent expansion of U.S. restrictions on export of advanced computing chips has created uncertainties for its prospects.

For the third quarter, net income attributable to ordinary shareholders was RMB 27.71 billion or $3.80 billion, compared to last year’s loss of RMB 20.56 billion. Earnings per share were RMB1.35 or $0.19, compared to loss of RMB 0.97 last year.

Earnings per ADS was RMB10.77 or $1.48, compared to loss of RMB7.77 per ADS last year.

The latest results mainly reflected a net gain arising from the increase in fair value of equity investments, compared to a net loss last year.

Adjusted net income was RMB40.19 billion or $5.51 billion, compared to last year’s RMB33.82 billion.

Adjusted earnings per share was RMB1.95 or $0.27, compared to prior year’s RMB1.61. Adjusted earnings per ADS was RMB15.63 or $2.14, compared to RMB 12.92 per share a year ago.

Analysts on average expected the company to report earnings of $2.11 per share, according to figures compiled by Thomson Reuters. Analysts’ estimates typically exclude special items.

Revenue grew 9 percent to RMB224.79 billion or $30.81 billion from prior year’s RMB 207.18 billion. The Street was looking for revenues of $30.77 billion for the quarter.

The company announced its first annual dividend distribution for fiscal year 2023, with an aggregate amount of approximately $2.5 billion.

The annual cash dividend would be $0.125 per ordinary share or $1.00 per ADS, payable in U.S. dollars, to holders of ordinary shares and holders of ADSs, as of the close of business on December 21.

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