The innovative disruption is now moving faster as wireless carrier Sprint, hoping to buy T-Mobile and challenge Verizon and ATT, and JD.com, Alibaba’s principal rival in the e-commerce market in China announced its American IPO earlier this year is now being followed by Alibaba Group, the giant e-commerce company and Weibo, China’s version of the micro-chat platform Twitter, in preparing for public offerings in the U.S.
Alibaba is being valued at $130 billion and many experts expect it to fetch more than Facebook’s $16 billion when Mark Zuckerberg’s firm went public nearly two years ago.
Weibo claimed over 129 million monthly active users as of year-end compared with Twitter’s 241 million.
Alibaba, which owns 19 percent of Weibo or $3.3 billion, can raise that stake to 30 percent, analysts say. A timetable for filing in the U.S. has not been announced.
Alibaba is also partly owned by Yahoo! (24 percent) and has kept that Internet stock from tumbling in the U.S. due to Alibaba’s stellar growth. Founded in 1999 as a marketplace for businesses to trade electronic and industrial hardware, Alibaba has become a behemoth, part e-Bay, part Google, and part PayPal, analysts say. Its 2012 sales reached $160 billion, nearly twice that of Amazon.com’s.
The other major China player in the e-commerce marketplace is China’s largest and most used Internet service portal–Tencent. Tencent said it planned to buy 15 percent of JD.com.
Here comes everybody and the wave is only beginning.
Here’s Michael J. de la Merced’s story in full on the IPOs: