China regulators fine Alibaba $2.75 bn for anti-monopoly violations

The billionaire founder Jack Ma’s business empire has been particularly put under intense scrutiny after his stinging criticism of China’s regulatory system in late October.

Chinese regulators have fined Alibaba Group Holding Ltd 18 billion yuan ($2.75billion) for violating anti-monopoly rules and abusing its dominant market position, marking the highest ever anti-trust fine to be imposed in the country.

The penalty, equivalent to around 4% of Alibaba’s revenues in 2019, comes amid an unprecedented regulatory crackdown on the home-grown technology conglomerates in the last few months that have weighed on company shares.

Alibaba’s billionaire founder Jack Ma’s business empire has been particularly put under intense scrutiny after his stinging criticism of China’s regulatory system in late October.

In late December, China’s State Administration for Market Regulation (SAMR) announced it launched an antitrust probe into the company. That came after authorities halted a planned $37 billion IPO from Ant Group, Alibaba’s internet finance arm.

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