Jack Ma established a system that rotates executives to make sure the company stays up to date in the fast-changing internet space. The cloud computing titan made a few major changes on Thursday.

There is a decision that stands out at the third largest public cloud infrastructure provider in the world. The acting president is Daniel Zhang, who is related to the CEO of the company.

Speculation surrounds the timing of the restructure. Two weeks ago, a serious server failure shut down many services in the region, including OKX. The system failure made it one of the biggest cloud providers in China.

Jeff will focus his attention on the Damo Academy. One of the 29 members of the group of exclusive executives with major influence on the firm's direction has beenZhang. He designed the system infrastructure for one of the world's biggest online marketplaces.

As China navigates escalating tech sanctions from the U.S., he will continue to lead the Internet of Things initiatives at Damo.

Daniel wrote in an internal email that Jeff has led the team to deliver outstanding results in technological innovation and industry influence.

The CEO will be in charge of both the cloud business and the enterprise communication app. We wrote about it in 2020.

At its annual summit this week, Alibaba Cloud reiterated its latest strategy to “integrate cloud into Dingtalk (in Chinese),” its work collaboration app that’s analogous to Slack.

The slogan suggests the strategic role Alibaba wants Dingtalk to play: an operating system built on Alibaba Cloud, the world’s third-largest infrastructure as a service behind Amazon and Microsoft. It’s a relationship that echoes the one between Microsoft 365 and Azure, as president of Alibaba Cloud Zhang Jianfeng previously suggested in an interview (in Chinese).

It is hard to imagine Daniel dedicating himself to the cloud business for a long time. The cloud segment, accounting for 10% of overall revenues in the second quarter, will be looking for the next boss.

It will be a lot of work for the successor to be a good one. The cloud arm is not growing as fast as it could. With rising tensions between China and Russia, Chinese internet firms are turning to foreign providers such as Amazon Web Services to sever ties with China. After TikTok moved its data off its service, the cloud took a hit.

The company commented on its November earnings call.

A decline in revenue from the top internet customer that has stopped using our overseas cloud service for its international business, online education customers, as well as softer demand from other customers in China internet industry drove the 18% decline in revenue from customers in the internet industry.

There is rivalry between the two companies, one of which has a stronghold in games. The cloud division of China Telecom is getting a head start in supporting government and public infrastructure.

Alibaba Cloud pledges $1B to boost overseas alliance