Alibaba’s billionaire founder resurfaced as he spoke to 100 rural teachers through a video call, three months after his last public appearance in October, sending the e-commerce firm’s shares up more than 8% in Hong Kong.
A recording of the call was first posted on a news portal backed by the government of Zhejiang, the eastern province where Alibaba is headquartered, and the video was verified by an Alibaba spokesperson.
Speculations swirled around Ma’s whereabouts after media reported in December that he skipped the taping of a TV program he created. Ma, known for his love for the limelight, has seen his e-commerce empire Alibaba and fintech giant Ant Group increasingly in the crosshairs of the Chinese authorities in recent months.
Ma last appeared publicly at a conference where he castigated China’s financial regulatory system in front of a room of high-ranked officials. His controversial remark, according to reports, prompted