Alibaba Group Holding Limited (NYSE: BABA) acquired Kaola, the import e-commerce platform of NetEase, Inc. (NASDAQ: NTES), for approximately US$2 billion.
Alibaba plans for Kaola to continue to operate independently under its current brand. Tmall Import and Export General Manager Alvin Liu will serve as Kaola’s new CEO.
In addition, Alibaba and NetEase have entered into deal for Alibaba, together with Yunfeng, to invest approximately US$700m in NetEase Cloud Music in its latest round of financing. The completion of this deal is subject to certain closing conditions.
NetEase will remain the controlling shareholder of NetEase Cloud Music following the closing of this transaction.
Led by William Ding, Chief Executive Officer, NetEase is an internet technology company based in Hangzhou, China dedicated to providing premium online services centered around content, community, communication and commerce. NetEase develops and operates some of the most popular PC-client and mobile games in China and has been expanding rapidly into other international markets such as Japan and North America in more recent years.
In addition to its self-developed game content, NetEase also operates some of the most popular international online games in China by partnering with Blizzard Entertainment, Mojang AB (a Microsoft subsidiary) and other global game developers.
It also operates Yanxuan, an e-commerce platform that cater to the rising middle-class consumer market in China as well as offering advertising, e-mail and other innovative services including music and online education.