Alibaba’s Jack Ma, Joe Tsai Pledge Shares for Loans, FT Reports

(Bloomberg) — Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.’s largest individual shareholders Jack Ma and Joe Tsai pledged parts of their combined $35 billion stake in the e-commerce giant in exchange for significant loans from banks, the Financial Times reported, citing company documents.

The share pledges were made by offshore companies controlling more than half of the duo’s stake in Alibaba, which stood at 5.8% as of December, according to the FT. The documents didn’t disclose the amount of the share pledges, which began when Alibaba listed in the U.S. in 2014.

The two billionaires pledged their shares to banks including UBS Group AG, Credit Suisse Group AG and Goldman Sachs Group Inc., the newspaper reported.

Alibaba told the FT that co-founder Ma and his affiliates currently did not have any loans outstanding collateralized by the company’s shares. In Vice Chairman Tsai’s case, his outstanding loans backed by shares were easily manageable, with prudent loan-to-value ratios to provide a substantial cushion against triggering a margin call, the report cited Alibaba as saying.

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