Alibaba cloud division to be profitable within FY2021 - CFO

FILE PHOTO: A logo of Alibaba Group is seen at an exhibition during the World Intelligence Congress in Tianjin, China, May 16, 2019. REUTERS/Jason Lee/File Photo

HONG KONG (Reuters) - Chinese tech giant Alibaba’s cloud unit expects to be profitable within 2021, a senior executive said on Wednesday.

Maggie Wu, chief financial officer of Alibaba, made the remarks at an livestreamed investor day event.

The company, a dominant player in China’s cloud market, is fending off challenge from domestic rival Tencent which is also trying to capture cloud business opportunities.

Alibaba has said it would invest 200 billion yuan ($29.36 billion) in its cloud infrastructure over three years.

In the June quarter, Alibaba’s cloud computing revenue grew 59% from a year earlier to 12,345 million yuan on higher revenue contribution from its public cloud and hybrid cloud businesses.

Cainiao, Alibaba’s logistics unit, will likely see operating cash flow turn positive in fiscal year 2021, Wu added.

Reporting by Pei Li and Josh Horwitz; Editing by Himani Sarkar