The acquisition could help Alibaba to steer its business into the rapidly growing hedge fund industry in China. Per reports from the Asset Management Association of China, the number of private security funds was up by a huge 140% annually, as of May 31, 2016.
Chinese e-commerce juggernaut Alibaba Group Holding Limited’s (BABA - Analyst Report) affiliate Ant Financial has reportedly invested in Shanghai Suntime Information Technology Co., a financial data provider. Though there hasn’t been any official announcement, media reports indicate that the deal is worth about $35 million and covers a 20% stake in Shanghai Suntime. If the news is true, Ant Financial is now the second largest shareholder in Shanghai Suntime, after the data provider’s Chairman Liao Bing. Alibaba’s Plans The new move could add a wide gamut of financial products to Alibaba’s portfolio, helping it to fetch more revenues. It will also push the company to expand beyond e-commerce. Alibaba has been aggressively expanding into media and data businesses. Through Ant Financial, the company controls Yu’E Bao, China’s largest money market fund.