Alibaba Demotes Top Executive After Investigation Into Improper Behaviour
Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has demoted Jiang Fan, its head of e-commerce, and one of its most senior executives, after it conducted an internal investigation into allegations of improper behavior against him, Reuters has reported.
The company has removed Jiang, who oversees its main online shopping services, from a partnership of 38 people who influence the board’s make-up, and demoted him from senior vice president to vice president. The company also took away a year’s worth of financial incentives from him.
The decision follows speculation about Jiang’s relationship with Chinese celebrity and social media influencer, Zhang Dayi, and whether he had used his influence at Alibaba to ensure preferential treatment to merchants associated with Ruhnn, an e-commerce company where Zhang works as an influencer and as Chief Marketing Officer.
This month, Jiang’s wife posted on Chinese social media platform Weibo, publicly warning Dayi not to "mess with” her husband, igniting a wave of speculation on social media about the relationship between Dayi and Jiang.
A former Google software engineer, Jiang joined Alibaba in 2013 after selling his app analytics company Umeng to the company. He was seen by many as a potential successor to current CEO and Chairman Daniel Zhang, who took over Alibaba from founder Jack Ma formally in 2019.