Deep Dives

Jack Ma's first public appearance in a while

June 18, 2023
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Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba, has reappeared at a public event after his withdrawal from public life since 2020 following criticisms of Chinese regulators. His recent engagement in a math competition sponsored by Alibaba and teaching activities in Tokyo have dispelled concerns about his wellbeing.

Jack Ma's Resurfacing: The Alibaba founder was seen attending a company-sponsored event.
  • This event was the Alibaba Global Mathematics Competition's final, held in Hangzhou.
  • His presence was reported by Bloomberg, citing a post from the Damo Academy.

  • Public Absence and Speculation: Ma's public appearances have been sparse since he criticized Chinese regulators in 2020.
  • These criticisms led to difficulties with Alibaba's planned IPO, which seemed to trigger Ma's retreat from the public sphere.
  • His absence led to rumors and concerns about his wellbeing.

  • Recent Sightings: In recent months, there have been a few sightings of Ma.
  • In January, he appeared in Thailand and was photographed in a Bangkok restaurant.
  • In March, social media posts indicated that he visited a private school he founded in Beijing.

  • New Role as a University Teacher: Ma has assumed a teaching role at the University of Tokyo.
  • He teaches sustainable agriculture and food production.
  • His first class was held on June 12, reported by the South China Morning Post.

  • Confirmation of Ma's Wellbeing: Alibaba's president, Michael Evans, affirmed Ma's status.
  • Evans mentioned that Ma is alive, well, happy, and creatively engaged.
  • He confirmed that Ma is teaching at a university in Tokyo and spending more time in China.
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