Alibaba says annual net profit rises by 47 per cent

Profit reached 63.985 billion yuan ($10.2 billion), boosted by a 60 per cent increase in revenue from its core business

epa06710592 (FILE) - A file photo dated 22 October 2007 shows a man walking past an Ltd. advertising billboard in Hong Kong, China (re-issued 04 May 2018). Alibaba on 04 May 2018 reported their fiscal year 2018 results, saying their full year revenue grew 58 per cent to 39,898 million USD and core commerce revenue grew 60 per cent, while profit growth reached over 40 per cent and annual free cash flow was at 15.8 billion USD. Alibaba says they expect overall revenue for fiscal year 2019 to grow above 60 per cent.  EPA/YM

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has announced a 47 per cent leap in net profit for the fiscal year 2017/2018, helped by a rise in smartphone and tablet transactions on its shopping platform.

Profit climbed to 63.985 billion yuan ($10.2 billion), boosted by a 60 per cent rise in revenue from its core business, the online retailer said.

The New York-listed firm added 98 million consumers over the year ended March 31 for a total of 552 million using its e-commerce marketplaces.

Overall revenue climbed 58 per cent year-on-year to 250.27 billion yuan, with revenue from cloud computing up 101 per cent and digital media and entertainment up 33 per cent.

For the fourth quarter, the company saw revenue soar by 61 per cent year-on-year to 62 billion yuan.

"Alibaba Group had an excellent quarter and fiscal year, driven by robust growth in our core commerce business and investments we have made over the past several years in longer-term growth initiatives," group CEO Daniel Zhang said in a statement.

Chief financial officer Maggie Wu said the company expects similar results in the year ahead.

"Looking ahead to 2019, we expect overall revenue growth above 60 per cent, reflecting our confidence in our core business as well as positive momentum in new businesses," she said.

Alibaba, which has made billionaire founder Jack Ma one of China's richest men and a global e-commerce icon, has been on a roll, regularly beating revenue estimates.