(Yahoo) Jack Ma, who serves as Executive Director of Alibaba, a company he founded in 1999 has announced his retirement. The business magnate will retire on Monday, September 10, according to reports.
Retiring at the age of 54, Ma will now focus on philanthropy, he said. Notably, he will remain one of the board members of the Chinese giant.
Jack Ma: From teacher to CEO to back to teacher: Ma's journey
Ma has had an incredible journey from being a teacher to becoming the richest man in China.
Earlier, Ma spoke about creating a foundation in his name, following the footsteps of Bill Gates. This foundation will focus on education.
He also spoke about taking up teaching again and said, "This is something I think I can do much better than being CEO of Alibaba."
Ma stepped down from CEO of Alibaba in 2013 but remained the face of the group. His net worth crosses $400 billion.
Having interests in e-commerce and Hollywood film production, he spearheaded the 2014 initial public offering, the biggest of the company.
The parent company has e-commerce, online payment, banking, entertainment and cloud computing businesses. It also has stakes in Chinese microblogging website Weibo.
The company: With Ma gone, what's next for Alibaba now?
After the news was announced, Alibaba's shares fell more than 2 percent, reports said.
The exit of the charismatic founder will make it difficult for the group to establish global roots.
Though largely successful in China and South Asia, Alibaba's global presence is limited. Notably, Alibaba group has often been compared with Amazon.
The company's current CEO is Daniel Zhang.