Tencent to Distribute JD.com Stake to Shareholders, Martin Lau Resigns as JD.com Director

Chinese internet giant Tencent on Thursday announced that it will distribute about 460 million shares of China’s largest retailer JD.com to shareholders in the form of interim dividends. Tencent‘s shareholding ratio in JD.com will reduce from 17% to 2.3%, losing its status as the largest shareholder of JD.com. In addition, Tencent President Martin Lau will also step down as a director of JD.com.

Tencent revealed that JD.com has been able to raise funds independently, and this transfer is in line with the company’s investment strategy. Tencent and JD.com will still maintain their strong partnership in the future, and the company has no plans to further reduce its holdings in JD.com at present.

JD.com followed by announcing that Tencent currently indirectly holds about 17% of its issued shares, as well as the transfer plan. The two companies will keep a robust partnership and will carry on with current strategic cooperation agreements.

According to the board and shareholder changes released publicly by JD.com, Martin Lau, who has served as a member of the company’s board of directors and as a member of the compensation committee  since March 2014, has retired from the board. Lau said: “I look forward to maintaining a strong partnership between JD.com and Tencent. They will continue creating value for the society.”

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According to public information, in March 2014, Tencent started to invest in JD.com, and Tencent‘s e-commerce business also joined JD.com‘s scope. Later, Tencent participated in the IPO subscription in JD.com, and the two companies carried out multiple cooperations. With Tencent‘s investment, JD.com has successfully transformed to adopt a mobile internet retail business, and its gross merchandise value has achieved more than 10 times growth.