Alibaba founder Jack Ma appeared in public for the first time in months as his tech empire continued to face scrutiny from Chinese regulators.
For several weeks, Ma remained in the limelight, sparking speculation about his whereabouts as his companies face heightened regulatory scrutiny.
And in Video clip Posted on Chinese social media, Ma addressed rural teachers as part of one of his charity initiatives.
The annual event, usually hosted in the resort town of Sanya, sees the Jack Ma Foundation celebrate the achievements of rural teachers who receive monetary support.
A spokesperson for the Jack Ma Foundation said: Ma participated in the electronic party of the annual Rural Teacher Initiative event on January 20.
Alibaba’s founder made some comments in October that appeared critical of China’s financial regulator, just over a week before Ant Group financial firm was listed on the Shanghai and Hong Kong stock exchanges.
The comments were one of the reasons attributed to Chinese regulators to halt the initial public offering of Ant Group, the fintech giant founded by the founder of Alibaba.
An initial public offering was banned at the last minute from Chinese regulators, and its companies have since been targeted as part of a crackdown on technology from Beijing.
Nothing has been seen since those comments, leading to speculation that he is missing, and his whereabouts have been the subject of intense speculation in recent weeks, after he accused Chinese authorities of clamping down on innovation and criticizing the country’s banks.
The Chinese authorities launched a crackdown on the two companies, Alibaba and Ant Group, In December, the State Administration of Market Regulation of China opened an investigation into Alibaba into monopolistic practices.
Beijing is also finalizing the details of the comprehensive antitrust law, The regulators asked Ant Group to correct its business and comply with regulatory requirements.
China is pushing through the new rules on so-called microlending, with the law incorporating provisions such as capital requirements for technology companies making loans.
Beijing is concerned about the power of technology companies that have managed to grow, largely unhindered, over the past few years and have become major parts of daily life in China.