Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba, the pioneer in e-commerce in China, celebrates his birthday on Tuesday leaving the group's presidency.
With only 54 years, Ma will give up his position to Daniel Zhang, who has served as CEO since 2015.
Within Alibaba he is known as Xiaoyaozi, the character of a novel about martial arts whose name means "without restrictions."
Zhang will take the reins of the technology giant that today employs more than 100,000 people and whose capitalization is around US $ 480,000 million.
A millionaire idea
Born into a poor family in Hangzhou, in eastern China, Jack Ma began working as an English teacher.
But in 1999, Her live changed. Without any experience or knowledge in the world of technology, he created one of the most important e-commerce companies in the world.
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He bought his first computer when he was 33 years old and was surprised that when he searched for the word "beer" online, there were no Chinese among the results.
This is how he came up with the idea of creating his own business, which over the years has become an electronic giant.
Thanks to this, Ma is the richest man in his country, with a net worth ofUS $38.600 millions of dollars, According to the magazine Forbes.
"I still have many dreams to pursue. Those who know me know that I don't like to be idle. The world is big and I'm still young, and I want to try new things," said the magnate in an open letter in which he announced that he would leave the post last year.
Jack Ma has said he now wants to devote himself to his philanthropic activities and especially to work to promote education in rural areas.
What is known about Daniel Zhang?
Daniel Zhang was born in Shanghai in 1972 and graduated from the University of Finance and Economics based in that same city.
He started his career in Alibaba in 2007 as CFO of Taobao Marketplace, its e-commerce platform, and in 2008, assumed the additional position as general manager of Tmall.com. In 2011 he became its president.
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Your reputation for "persona free and unrestricted"That it has in Alibaba will be useful when you start running the company, which currently lives one of its most challenging moments: the Chinese market, where two thirds of its revenue is generated, is slowing.
What's next for Jack Ma and Alibaba now?
Karishma Vaswani analysis, business correspondent in Asia
Duncan Clark, who wrote a book about Jack Ma, said the businessman has gradually brought technology and finance experts to Alibaba and has been "consciously preparing for his departure."
These movements are expected to ensure a more smooth transition for Alibaba.
Quiet, unpretentious and known for moving away from the spotlight, Daniel Zhang is nothing like his predecessor.
Hard times await Zhang, as attempts to expand internationally have been unsuccessful.
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The scrutiny that the US does Chinese companies are preventing Alibaba's growth in the western world.
Analysts say that, in areas of Southeast Asia and India, understanding how to work in local markets and with the local population is being a challenge for the Chinese company.
Then there is the multimillion-dollar public offering that was made in Hong Kong, supposedly delayed due to protests.
However, Zhang's biggest challenge could be the rise to the challenge of the image of its founder: a man who enjoyed the respect and affection of his staff and the international community.
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