Alibaba founder Jack Ma invests $532 mn in Hundsun Technologies

Jack MaJack Ma, the founder of China's e-commerce company Alibaba Group Holding, is investing 3.3 billion yuan ($532 million) in financial software developer, Hundsun Technologies Inc.

Hundsun Group, which owns a 20.6-per cent stake in Hundsun Technologies, will sell its entire stake to Zhejiang Finance Credit Network Technology Co, which is  99.1 per cent owned by Ma.

The deal will see Zhejiang Finance Credit become the largest shareholder in Shanghai-listed Hundsun Technologies.

Trading of Hundsun Technologies' stocks have been suspended since 17 March, and will resume on 8 April.

Hundsun Technologies provides software application solutions to the financial services industry, and holds a 70-per cent market share in the country for securities and fund management software used by banks, brokerages, insurance firms and fund management companies.

Alibaba's affiliates are online payment service Alipay, and money market fund Yu'ebao, and some companies fear that Alibaba will gain access to sensitive information handled by Hundsun Technologies, which will give unfair advantage to Alipay.

In its filing with the stock exchange, Hundsun dismissed such fears by saying that the company only provides financial information software to its clients, and is not involved in data management and after-sales software operations.

The filing also added that. Ma has no plans to merge any company under his control into Hundsun Technologies within the next 12 months.

The latest investment by Ma comes as Alibaba Group is preparing an initial public offering in New York and possibly Hong Kong in order to raise more than $15 billion, according to media reports.

The move also comes when Alibaba and Ma have recently made a series of investments or acquisitions.

Earlier this week, Alibaba said it would invest about $692 million for a 25 per cent stake in Chinese department and supermarket chain Intime Retail Group Co,

Last month, Alibaba invested $215 million in messaging and free-calling app TangoMe Inc, and offered to take private Chinese digital mapping and navigation firm AutoNavi Holdings Ltd in a $1.58-billion deal.