Alibaba reports strong revenue growth in 1st fiscal quarter

The logo of Alibaba Group is seen at the company's headquarters in Hangzhou Zhejiang province China

Alibaba reported revenue of $16.3 billion for the three months through June, at an increase of 42 percent from a year ago, thanks to significant growth in its unprofitable businesses like food delivery and cloud services.

Net income attributable to ordinary shareholders was RMB21.3 billion (US$3.1 billion), up significantly year-over-year due to significantly higher share-based compensation expense last year. Gartner Inc.'s most recent assessment of the cloud infrastructure segment, which excluded related categories such as software-as-a-service, placed Alibaba third behind Microsoft Corp. and Amazon Web Services Inc.in market share. Read Also: Alibaba opens platform for US SMBs to compete with AmazonIts Cloud computing revenue grew 66 per cent year-over-year to $1.1 billion during the quarter, primarily driven by an increase in average revenue per customer.

The beats show the company is managing to outperform expectations even as it weathers an increasingly competitive e-commerce industry and a tougher macroeconomic environment. The company's revenues were also bolstered by its strong online retail business. Its China retail marketplaces had 755 million mobile monthly active users, representing a quarterly net increase of 34 million. "With strong cash flow from our core commerce business, we will continue to invest in technology and bring digital transformation to millions of businesses globally", said Daniel Zhang.

The company said its China retail marketplace added rose to 674 million active customers, up 20 million from the 12-month period ended March 31.

Alibaba's focus on so-called lower-tier cities echoes that of JD.com, which spoke of a similar strategy in its Wednesday earnings call.

Following the release of Alibaba's earnings results, the company's stocks rallied on Thursday.

Revenue from its core operations of e-commerce increased 44 percent year-on-year to about 99.5 billion yuan, according to the report.

Alibaba's earnings were consistent with retail sales in China that showed shoppers continued to spend.

Tmall was responsible for 32.3 per cent of China's entire cross-border e-commerce takings in the first quarter, with Netease Kaola in second place with 24.8 per cent of the business.

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