Alibaba Hides GMV, Probably Downplaying eCommerce Dependence

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Alibaba reported a 55% increase in group revenue and a 41% increase in core commerce revenue for the September quarter on Wednesday. However, the online retailer failed to mention GMV, gross merchandise volume, for the first time since its listing in the U.S. According to Sina News, this indicates that the online retailing giant may have begun playing down the importance of its conventional eCommerce contribution to the group.

Alibaba does not reveal GMV

GMV (gross merchandise volume) is an essential indicator in customary eCommerce transactions, as it shows the overall sales value for merchandise on a specific platform during a particular period of time. The Chinese eCommerce giant had previously been emphasizing its GMV figures before to showcase the increasing growth of its Tmall and Taobao marketplaces.

In March, Alibaba announced a new milestone as it sold more than $443.8 billion (3 trillion yuan) in products in the fiscal year ending that month. In addition, the online retailer promised to double annual trading volume to 6 trillion yuan by 2020. In June, however, founder Jack Ma said during a teleconference meeting for investors that the online retailing giant would not publish GMV figures anymore. Also, according to the Sina report, Ma announced recently that the eCommerce giant will not use the label “ecommerce” anymore, as it has entered a “new retail era.”

Alibaba’s online marketplaces Tmall and Taobao saw a declining trend in the growth rate of active purchasers during the quarter. The Chinese economy, which is slowing, will have a negative effect on Alibaba’s core commerce businesses after years of fast expansion. This may compel the China-based company to consider transformation, says ZDNet.

Price target raised

Nevertheless, analysts continue to be bullish on the Chinese firm. On Thursday, Oppenheimer analysts raised their price target for the eCommerce giant from $115 to $120, based on its stronger-than-anticipated 2016 Q2 results. The firm has an Outperform rating on the stock. Alibaba’s revenue increase of 55% y-o-y to $5.14 billion was 2% more than what was expected by Oppenheimer. The firm added that the boost was mostly driven by mobile monthly active users.

“We see this as a milestone for user behavior that should continue to drive BABA’s growth through improved frequency/monetization,” the analyst said, according to Barron’s.

On Thursday, Alibaba shares closed down 0.77% at $97.75. Year to date, the stock is up almost 20%, while in the last year, it is up almost 17%. The stock has a 52-week high of $109.87 and a 52-week low of $59.25.

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