Alibaba, Pinduoduo slug it out for control of China’s online bargain basement

After facing one of the first serious threats in years to its core e-commerce business, industry behemoth Alibaba is finally showing early signs of turning the tide in its ongoing battle with up-and-comer Pinduoduo. But the shift hasn’t come easy, and there’s no guarantee the tables might not turn yet again as China’s dominant e-commerce company rounds out its first year since visionary founder Jack Ma turned over the keys to a younger generation of new leaders.

The Pinduoduo threat and nascent Alibaba comeback are perhaps most easily traced in Pinduduo’s stock, which more than quadrupled from its 2018 IPO price, only to lose momentum after its own visionary CEO and founder Colin Huang scaled back his role in July. Since that move, which caught the investment community by surprise, the stock has lost about 20% of its value.

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