Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., China’s biggest e-commerce company, boosted half-year revenue at least 60 percent to more than $1.8 billion, as growth of its websites improved profitability, a person familiar with the matter said.
Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization as a percentage of revenue widened to 40 percent in the six months ended June 30, compared with 35 percent a year earlier, according to the person, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. The Internet company is part-owned by Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO:US) and Softbank Corp. (9984)
Alibaba is generating more revenue from increased advertising on its Taobao online marketplace and boosting subscription and commission income from its Tmall site, as Chinese consumers increase their purchases on the Internet. In May, Alibaba agreed to buy back a $7.1 billion stake in itself from Yahoo in a transaction that values the closely held Chinese company at at least $35 billion.
John Spelich, a spokesman at Alibaba in Hong Kong, and Makiko Ariyama, a spokeswoman at Tokyo-based Softbank, declined to comment. Dana Lengkeek, a spokeswoman at Sunnyvale, California-based Yahoo, also declined to comment.
Under the deal agreed in May, Yahoo will sell about 20 percent holding in Alibaba, halving its stake in the Chinese company. Softbank, Japan’s third-biggest mobile phone company, owns about 30 percent in Hangzhou, China-based Alibaba.
Alibaba increased its revenue in the three months ended Dec. 31 by 88 percent to $1.02 billion, Yahoo reported in a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission in May. In the year ended Sept. 30, 2011, Alibaba’s sales rose 81 percent to $2.35 billion, Yahoo reported in February.
Temasek Holdings Pte, Singapore’s state-owned investment company, and Russia’s Digital Sky Technologies are also among investors in Alibaba Group.
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