According to recent reports, Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba, has been hiding out with his family in Tokyo, Japan, as China cracks down on prominent internet companies and its most successful and rich businesspeople.
Jack Ma is renowned for being energetic and vocal, but during an event on October 24, when he criticised Chinese officials for limiting innovation, he might have gone too far.
Ma had even compared Chinese banks to pawn shops during the conference in Shanghai. To sum up, Ma’s Ant Group was about to launch the largest IPO in history when he decided to openly criticise the Chinese government or the ruling Communist Party. This was just a month before.
Beijing responded by halting his initial public offering and even calling Ma and Ant officials to a conference. The regulators have also demanded that Ant Group’s operations be restructured. Ma has already spent billions of dollars on the project.
Ma has most recently resided in Japan, according to the Financial Times, which is owned by the Japanese media giant Nikkei.
The newspaper reported that the former English teacher-turned-tech-star has been residing with his family in Tokyo for almost six months, citing anonymous sources. His time has been divided between work and play, including frequent trips to the US and Israel as well as onsen (hot springs) and ski resorts in the rural areas of Japan.