China acquires Alibaba stake, eases up on Didi

STORY: China has taken minority stakes with special rights in two domestic units of Alibaba.

Beijing has taken so-called 'golden shares' in private online media and content companies for more than five years.

It has expanded such deals to companies with large amounts of data.

That as authorities try to strengthen control over online content.

The golden shares are equal to about 1% of a firm, and bought by government-backed funds or companies.

It gives them board representation and, in some cases, veto rights for key business decisions.

The Alibaba stakes are the first known for the e-commerce firm.

It was a key target for China's two-year long regulatory crackdown on tech giants.

The company didn't respond to a request to comment.

There were more signs the crackdown is coming to an end on Friday (January 13), however.

Five sources told Reuters that China is due to allow Didi Global's ride-hailing app and other products back on domestic app stores as soon as next week.

Didi has been waiting for approval to resume new user registrations and downloads of its 25 banned apps in China since around mid-2021.

Sources say the firm ran afoul of watchdogs when it pressed ahead with a U.S. share listing against the regulators' will.