Chinese billionaire and business tycoon Jack Ma has been meeting business associates in Hong Kong, said Reuters quoting sources.
Ma has been keeping a low profile and was largely out of public view since regulatory clampdown on his business empire last year.
The crackdown on his business came soon after he delivered a speech last October criticising China’s financial regulators.
The chain of events resulted in shelving of his Ant Group’s mega IPO.
While Ma made a limited number of public appearances in mainland China after that, as speculation swirled about his whereabouts; one of the sources said the visit marked his first trip to the Asian financial hub since last October.
Alibaba did not immediately respond to requests for comment outside of its regular business hours. Comments from Ma typically come via the company.
Ma, once China’s most famous and outspoken entrepreneur; met at least “a few” business associates over meals last week, the sources said.
The former English teacher disappeared from public view for three months before surfacing in January; speaking to a group of teachers by video.
That eased concern about his unusual absence from the limelight and sent Alibaba shares surging.
Alibaba and its tech rivals have been the target of a wide-ranging regulatory crackdown on issues ranging from monopolistic behaviour to consumer rights.
The e-commerce behemoth was fined a record $2.75 billion in April over monopoly violations.
Earlier this year, regulators also imposed a sweeping restructuring on Ant; whose botched $37 billion initial public offering in Hong Kong and on Shanghai’s Nasdaq-style STAR Market would have been the world’s largest.