Alibaba’s CEO will oversee cloud after server outage

Alibaba’s former CEO, Jack Ma, passed the torch to Daniel Zhang and came up with a way to switch leaders to keep the company flexible in a world where th

Alibaba's CEO will oversee cloud after server outage

Photo Credit: Alibaba group

ings change quickly on the internet. On Thursday, the e-commerce and cloud computing giant announced changes.


After AWS and Microsoft, Alibaba Cloud is the third largest public cloud provider. Jeff Zhang is leaving his job as president of Alibaba Cloud Intelligence. Daniel Zhang, who is the CEO of Alibaba, takes over as acting president.

No one knows when the reorganization will happen. About two weeks ago, there was a big problem with Alibaba Cloud’s Hong Kong servers that shut down many services, including OKX. The one-day system outage was one of the worst things that have ever happened to Chinese cloud providers.

Jeff is not leaving; instead, he will focus on Alibaba’s Damo Academy. Zhang has been an important part of Alibaba Partnerships, a group of 29 executives who help decide the direction of the company, for the past 20 years. He helped make Taobao, which is one of the largest online markets in the world.

At Damo, he will continue to lead IoT activities and Alibaba’s proprietary chip development team, T-Head. This is important as China deals with growing U.S. tech penalties.

Daniel told his coworkers in an internal message that Jeff did a great job of leading Alibaba Cloud Intelligence in terms of technology innovation and industry influence.

The CEO will be in charge of both the cloud business and DingTalk, which is Alibaba’s platform for business communication. 2020’s:

Alibaba Cloud announced this week that it will “integrate cloud into DingTalk,” its Slack-like business collaboration software.

Alibaba wants DingTalk to be an operating system built on Alibaba Cloud, the third-largest IaaS behind Amazon and Microsoft. Alibaba Cloud president Zhang Jianfeng previously compared it to Microsoft 365 and Azure (in Chinese).

Daniel’s acting president title suggests he isn’t committed to the cloud business long-term. As Alibaba’s second-biggest business, cloud will go out of its way to recruit the next boss.

Whoever succeeds won’t have it easy. The cloud arm’s growth has slowed as it loses overseas revenue. Alibaba Cloud was previously the go-to answer for Chinese internet enterprises moving abroad, but escalating geopolitical concerns have them turning to Western suppliers like AWS. TikTok’s migration off Alibaba Cloud reportedly hurt Alibaba Cloud.

In November, the business said:

“Revenue from customers in [the] internet industry decreased roughly 18%, mainly due to a top internet customer that discontinued using our foreign cloud service for its worldwide business, online education customers, and softening demand from other customers in China’s internet industry.”

Alibaba Cloud’s domestic opponent is games-focused Tencent. It’s also vying with Huawei and Tianyi, China Telecom’s cloud spinoff, in supporting government and public infrastructure.


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