Alibaba

Alibaba's Revenue Beats Estimates; Mobile Revenue Soars

Alibaba's Revenue Beats Estimates; Mobile Revenue Soars
Image credit: Reuters | Aly Song

Chinese ecommerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. reported a better-than-expected 59 percent jump in quarterly revenue on Thursday, defying a slowdown in the Chinese economy.

Alibaba's total revenue rose to 32.15 billion yuan, or $4.84 billion, in the quarter ended June 30 from 20.25 billion yuan a year earlier. Analysts on average had expected revenue of 30.17 billion yuan, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Mobile revenue from the company's China commerce retail business increased 119.3 percent to 17.51 billion yuan, while monthly mobile active users increased 39 percent.

"We passed an important milestone this quarter in achieving higher monetization of mobile users than non-mobile users for the first time," Chief Financial Officer Maggie Wu said.

The company said its gross merchandise volume (GMV) -- the value of transactions carried out by third-party sellers on the company's platforms -- rose 24.4 percent to 837 billion yuan.

Alibaba said in June it would in the future only release GMV figures on an annual basis. The change followed the disclosure that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission was looking into the company's accounting practices.

The company, whose shares were up 4.8 percent in premarket trading, said in June that it expected to nearly double its transaction volumes by 2020.

The business is seen as a future growth driver for Alibaba, but contributed just 2 percent of overall revenue in the quarter.

Paying customers in Alibaba's cloud computing business increased to 577,000 from 263,000 a year earlier, boosting revenue by 156 percent.

Net income attributable to shareholders fell to 7.14 billion yuan, or 2.94 yuan per share, from 30.82 billion yuan, or 11.92 yuan per share, in the year-earlier quarter.

Facing the prospect of a saturated online retail market in China, Alibaba has been looking to grow outside its home base.

The company bought Singapore-based online retailer Lazada Group for about $1 billion in April, giving it a greater presence in Southeast Asia.

It has also been investing in a diverse array of other businesses, including cloud services provider Aliyun and driverless vehicles, hoping they can become an eventual source of growth.

Up to Wednesday's close of $87.33, Alibaba's shares had risen 7.46 percent since the start of the year.

(Reporting by Rishika Sadam in Bengaluru; Editing by Ted Kerr)

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