Alibaba reports 54% sales growth in its first post-IPO earnings report

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Alibaba, the Chinese e-commerce company that held the world’s largest initial public offering in September, reported strong sales growth in its first earnings report as a public company on Tuesday. For the three months ending on September 30, Alibaba’s net profit fell 38.6% to $494 million, or 20 cents a share. Excluding one-time items like those associated with stock-based compensation, the company reported net income of $1.11 billion, or 45 cents per share. A group of 25 analysts polled by Yahoo expected an average profit of about 45 cents per share.

Alibaba, the Chinese e-commerce behemoth, reported on Tuesday a jump in profit in its first earnings announcement since its initial public offering in September. Shrugging off a slowdown in the Chinese economy, Alibaba’s profit grew 16 percent from the same period a year earlier as the company’s sites benefited from the growing number of Chinese turning to the Internet to shop. Shares in the company, China’s largest e-commerce retailer by transactions, have risen about 50 percent since it raised nearly $21.8 billion in the highly anticipated initial stock sale. In a sign of the growing power of Chinese Internet companies, the listing surpassed the offering of Facebook, the American social media giant. Now with a market value of more than $250 billion, Alibaba is worth more than Facebook. Pointing to a huge jump in the number of customers using Alibaba’s e-commerce sites on smartphones and to strong increases in sales and profits, the company’s executive vice chairman, Joseph C. Tsai, said in a news conference after the earnings announcement that the results provided a “strong foundation for future sustained growth.”

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