Business Insider Edition

Inside Jack Ma's 60,000-person retirement party, which was held in an Olympic stadium and featured employee performances that made Ma cry

Taylor Nicole Rogers , Business Insider US
 Sep 11, 2019, 09:43 PM
Ma performed Josh Groban's "You Raise Me Up" with a group of senior executives on a portable stage that was pulled around the arena, the Journal reported.
Courtesy of Alibaba


Outgoing Alibaba chairman Jack Ma is known for being flamboyant, and his retirement party from the online marketplace proved to be no different.

The occasion, officially billed as Alibaba's 20th-anniversary party, was held in an 80,000-seat arena and lasted for hours, Reuters reported.

The event was held in the city where Alibaba was founded 20 years ago, at the Hangzhou Olympic Sports Center.

"This is not the end of Jack Ma," Ma said to the crowd at the event, according to the Wall Street Journal. "This is just the beginning of passing down a heritage."

Ma, a former English teacher, founded Alibaba 20 years ago from his apartment in Hangzhou, Business Insider previously reported. Ma is now the richest person in China and has a net worth of R560 billion.

Here's how Jack Ma retired in style.

Many of the 60,000 guests were Alibaba employees.

Courtesy of Alibaba

Source: Reuters


The event began with a parade of employees from Alibaba's various divisions around the arena's running track.

Courtesy of Alibaba

Source: The Wall Street Journal


There was also a shape-shifting car ...

Courtesy of Alibaba

Source: Alibaba


... and people dressed like the company's mascots.

Courtesy of Alibaba

Source: Alibaba


The procession "mimicked the Olympic Games' Parade of Nations," according to The Wall Street Journal.

Courtesy of Alibaba

Source: The Wall Street Journal


Employees dressed up and performed songs and dances poking fun at Alibaba's company culture.

Courtesy of Alibaba

The topics of the songs ranged from employees' frequent travel to the staggering wealth employees have accumulated since Alibaba's founding, according to The Journal. One group even reportedly sang part of Travie McCoy's 2010 song "Billionaire."

Courtesy of Alibaba

Source: The Wall Street Journal


Ma teared up while watching his employees perform the routines they had practiced fro months, according to reports.

Courtesy of Alibaba

Source: Reuters


Ma performed Josh Groban's "You Raise Me Up" with a group of senior executives on a portable stage that was pulled around the arena, the Journal reported.

Courtesy of Alibaba

Source: The Wall Street Journal


As photos from the event show, Ma played an orange guitar, wore sunglasses and spiked shoulder pads and a wig.

Ma performed Josh Groban's "You Raise Me Up" with a group of senior executives on a portable stage that was pulled around the arena, the Journal reported.
Courtesy of Alibaba

Source: The Wall Street Journal


The group calls themselves "A band."

Courtesy of Alibaba

Source: The Wall Street Journal


"What a wonderful world with so many opportunities in it," Ma said in a moving address about Alibaba's future. "I wish to work in new fields. 'Green mountains won't change and the flowing waters are endless.' See you around."

Courtesy of Alibaba

Source: Alibaba


Incoming chairman and current CEO Daniel Zhang also gave a speech, saying, "We believe that the best way to give thanks to yesterday is to create the most beautiful future together."

Daniel Zhang

Source: Alibaba

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