Jun 03, 2016

    GIC, Temasek buy $1.4 billion of Alibaba shares

    SINGAPORE state funds bought US$1 billion (S$1.4 billion) of shares in Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba Group Holding Ltd as part of an US$8.9 billion sale by Japan's SoftBank Group Corp, Alibaba's biggest shareholder, the company said on Wednesday.

    Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC and state investor Temasek Holdings each purchased US$500 million of Alibaba shares at US$74 apiece through subsidiaries, Alibaba said, offering details of the SoftBank sale announced on Tuesday.

    GIC and Temasek confirmed the transactions but declined to provide further comment. Temasek is an existing investor in Alibaba.

    Alibaba purchased US$2 billion of its own stock at the same price, in a move which would add to earnings, executive vice-chairman Joe Tsai told analysts.

    Members of the Alibaba Partnership of senior executives and founders purchased another US$400 million, as expected, at the US$74 per share price, he added.

    SoftBank also offered US$5.5 billion in debt securities, which can be exchanged for Alibaba stock in three years, Tsai said.

    SoftBank Group said on Tuesday it would sell at least US$7.9 billion of shares in Alibaba to cut the Japanese firm's debt. It said it would remain Alibaba's largest shareholder after the sale. Shares of Alibaba fell about 6.5 per cent to close at US$76.69.