Alibaba posts quarterly revenue below analysts’ expectations

Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba has posted its third quarter financial report for 2014, which revealed that its revenue was lower than expected.

Analysts had expected quarterly revenue to hit $4.45 billion (£2.9 billion), but the actual figure came in at $4.22 billion. However, the firm did post better-than-expected earnings over the same period of 81 cents a share.

Read more: Alibaba under the government’s spotlight for selling fake goods

The Asian firm made headlines last year when it became the biggest US IPO in history, raising $21.8 billion for the company and its investors and surpassing Facebook’s IPO value of $16 billion. Since the initial public offering, Alibaba has seen its share price peak at $120, but it fell below $100 earlier this week.

In an interview at the World Economic Forum earlier this month, company founder and CEO Jack Ma explained that although he foresees many opportunities for further growth, it is still early days for Alibaba.

"Compared to 15 years ago, we are big,” he said. “But compared to 15 years later, we are still a baby."

Yahoo also recently announced that it would be spinning off its stake in the Alibaba Group, causing the company shares to increase in value by seven per cent to $51.42.

Despite, Alibaba’s failure to meet its revenue estimate, the company continues to grow, sometimes bringing it into conflict with the domestic government in Beijing. In particular, the company has been criticised for the huge number of fake goods being sold through its retail sites. It has been estimate that just 37.25 per cent of all products on the firm’s Taobao site are genuine.

Read more: The biggest IPO ever? Alibaba Group facts and figures

Jack Ma has clashed with the Chinese government several times, describing his relations with them as “interesting.” He added that businesses should respect the authorities but not “marry them.”