Alibaba Is in Talks With Hong Kong Stock Exchange Over Ownership Structure

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. is in talks with the Hong Kong Stock Exchange to come up with an ownership structure that would allow the Chinese e-commerce company to list its shares while enabling founder Jack Ma and his management team to maintain control, people familiar with the talks said.

Alibaba, which operates shopping sites where merchants sell items directly to consumers, could raise billions of dollars in an initial public offering of stock as early as this year and is deciding whether to list its shares in Hong Kong or New York. The IPO could value Alibaba at US$70 billion, based on analysts’ estimates, making it one of the world’s biggest Internet IPOs and a much sought-after prize for stock exchanges, investors and the bankers who advise the company.

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