As Alibaba readies for IPO, Cramer offers caution

Jim Cramer on Mad Money.
Don't understand Alibaba ownership structure: Cramer   

Though the opportunity to gain exposure to Chinese e-commerce is attractive, investors should be cautious as excitement builds for Alibaba Group's offering, CNBC's Jim Cramer said Monday.


Alibaba, the Hangzhou, China-based Internet retailer behind what could be the biggest initial public offering for a technology firm in the United States, began courting investors in New York on Monday.

The company seeks to raise more than $20 billion for its IPO and expects its stock to debut between $60 and $66 a share.

Read MoreAlibaba looks to build big cash stash for buyouts

"I think as it goes higher, as they check the range up, let's say $62, $68, whatever, you're going to get more and more people calling their brokers and saying 'Listen, I want a piece of this Alibaba,'" Cramer said on "Squawk on the Street." "At a certain point, we're going to say, 'Wow, it's gotten too big, too unwieldy and it can't hold.'"

Indeed, interest in Alibaba is likely to grow as investors learn more about the company. For his part, Cramer would like to know more about its ownership structure.

Read MoreAlibaba who? US investors not that interested

Though Alibaba's IPO road show kicked off in New York on Monday, it's expected to stretch around the world, from London to Hong Kong.

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"I just hope that the education doesn't force everyone to sell everything else that's in the space because then we really are going to have just a hammering like you wouldn't believe," Cramer said.

After all, Alibaba could lure investors from rivals Amazon.com or Google "if the growth characteristics are superior," he said.

"I'm sure that [Amazon CEO] Jeff Bezos is watching this thing because you just don't want to be eclipsed by them," Cramer said. "And Bezos is spend, spend, spend in China and yet these guys are, their algorithms are very good. They're very good."

—By CNBC's Drew Sandholm

DISCLOSURE: When this story was published, Cramer's charitable trust did not own Amazon.com. It did, however, own Google (Class A) shares.