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Jack Ma, Alibaba founder, stepping down as CEO

Jack Ma, the founder of e-commerce company Alibaba Group, says he is stepping down as CEO.

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Alibaba chairman and chief executive Jack Ma. (AFP/Getty Images)

Jack Ma, the founder of e-commerce giant Alibaba Group, says he is stepping down as CEO because, at 48, he’s getting too old for the Internet business, the Associated Press reported.

"I see that Alibaba's young people have better, more brilliant, dreams than mine, and they are more capable of building a future that belongs to them,” the Chinese tech entrepreneur said in a letter to employees, the AP reported.

Ma added that other Alibaba executives born in the 1960s would begin passing the reins to younger managers this year, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Ma said he would relinquish his CEO post by May 10 but remain chairman of the company he started in 1999, the AP reported. He did not reveal who his successor will be, but said that person will be named by May.

The Alibaba Group runs Taobao, the largest e-commerce site in China; Tmall.com, a consumer shopping site; and Alipay, an electronic payments service, Bloomberg Businessweek reported.

According to Bloomberg Businessweek: As of last year, Taobao and Tmall.com accounted for 71 percent of consumers’ online purchases in China, according to research firm Analysys International.

An IPO for Taobao is likely within the next five years, Bloomberg Businessweek reported.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/asia-pacific/china/130115/jack-ma-alibaba-founder-stepping-down-ceo