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The richest man in China is unhappy.
Speaking to CNBC from his company's headquarters in Hangzhou, China, Alibaba founder and executive chairman Jack Ma said he has not been happy recently, and he finds being his country's richest man "a great pain."
"This month I'm not very happy—I think too much pressure," Ma said. "I try to make myself happy no, because I know that if I'm not happy my colleagues are not happy, and my shareholders are not happy, and my customers are not happy."
He suggested that the company's historic IPO—valued at a record-setting $25 billion—may have contributed to this stress.
"Maybe the stock goes so up, maybe people have high expectations on you, maybe I think too much about the future and have too many things to worry about," Ma said. "IPO is great because ... I'm happy with the results, but honestly I think when people think too highly of you, you have the responsibility to calm down and be yourself."
These pressures may not be receding anytime soon. Ma told CNBC he hopes to take one of Alibaba's most successful branches public in the near future. Alipay, which handles financial services such as digital payment and escrow, will go public not to raise funds, he said, but to provide the opportunity for more public scrutiny, and therefore enhance confidence in the platform.
But Ma said the stress in his life is coming from more than just his job: Becoming China's richest man has provided its own set of headaches.
"People say, 'Well Jack, rich people is good.' Yeah it is good, but not the richest man in China. It's a great pain because when you're (the) richest person in the world, everybody (is) surrounding you for money," he said. "Today when I walk on the street, people look at you in a different—I want people to see this is entrepreneur, this is a guy who is having fun of himself, and I want to be myself."
In order to get rid of this "pain," Ma suggested he is looking at ways to use his money to give back to society.
Any philanthropy will have to be efficient and effective, he said, because "spending money is much more difficult than making money." Ma said he is looking at potentially establishing a foundation that can "spend money in a business way."
Ma even suggested that he may be competing with the other global billionaires in this regard.
"The competition between me and Bill Gates probably: Who can spend money more effectively that can do better philanthropy," he said.
Ma spoke with CNBC as Alibaba's most successful promotion ever drew to a close: It's annual Singles' Day shopping event drew in $9.34 billion in sales over 24 hours, easily besting last year's total of about $5.8 billion.
But even this runaway success (the highest analyst estimates called for $9 billion, while many expected just over $8 billion) is causing stress, Ma said. All of those sales, he said, will necessitate perfect execution and logistics to ensure timely three-day deliveries.
He said he is closely monitoring the weather throughout China.
Singles' Day—so named because the date Nov. 11 has four singles (11/11)—is China's equivalent of Cyber Monday. The event was essentially invented by Alibaba in 2009 when the company took an in-joke between university students celebrating bachelorhood, and morphed it into an excuse for purchasing discounted consumer goods.