My Alibaba investment up over 500%: Russian billionaire

Alibaba investment up 500%: Russian billionaire
Alibaba investment up 500%: Russian billionaire   

Billionaire Alisher Usmanov's investment in Alibaba has soared more than 500 percent since he invested in the group, he told CNBC, adding that he has not sold any of his stake in the Chinese e-commerce giant.

Usmanov's holding in Alibaba is not public and the tech investor, Russia's richest man worth $18.5 billion according to Forbes' ranking of billionaires, declined to comment on how much money he made from the investment.

But asked what the percentage upside of his investment in the group was, Usmanov said there was no modest way to describe it. "I think more than 500 percent," he said.

The initial public offering (IPO) of Alibaba in September was the biggest in history. The group raised $25 billion in its IPO and shares surged 38 percent on their market debut.

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Founder Jack Ma—the former English-teacher-turned-dotcom billionaire—has touted his e-commerce platform as a way for smaller merchants to expand their international footprint, including access to consumers in China.

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Usmanov's stake in Alibaba was "not big, but big enough for us," he said.

The head of Usmanov's asset-management company USM Advisors LLC told Bloomberg earlier this year that the billionaire had reduced his stake in Facebook to focus on Chinese companies in his portfolio of foreign investments. The size and value of the stake were not disclosed.

"I admire Facebook, but I said 'arrivederci' Facebook," Usmanov told CNBC, implying he had sold his entire stake but without elaborating.

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He has invested in Chinese low-cost smartphone maker Xiaomi, arguing it is a "future technology giant".

"They have become a major compan yin China,the most successful since Huawaei," Usmanov said. "We are great believers in this company and we're always been prepared to invest, make an investment into this company. We know the creator of this company very well. And we'll keep investing in such companies."

Usmanov said he is also turning his attention to technology investments in India, particularly in online trade.

"We are looking now at this. I think emerging markets are still undervalued," he said.