Alibaba’s results improve before IPO

Alibaba Group Holding’s revenue accelerated in the second quarter on strong gains in its mobile business, providing investors with what may be the final glimpse of the Chinese e-commerce company’s financials before its expected landmark market debut.

Alibaba, whose IPO could be the largest ever by a technology company, said mobile revenue was roughly a third of its total transaction volume in the quarter ended June 30, up from 27.4 percent in the first three months of the year. Revenue in the second quarter increased 46 percent year-on-year, to $2.54 billion.

“The results are very positive overall for the forthcoming IPO and I think you can see valuations to head north of $200 billion as we go through the IPO process,” Atlantic Equities analyst James Cordwell said.

Alibaba, expected by some to price its IPO as early as next week, will have a roadshow next month.

— Reuters

Court rules on claims by FedEx workers

A federal appeals court on Wednesday concluded that
FedEx Ground drivers in California and Oregon are employees and not independent contractors, and can therefore pursue their claims of unpaid wages and benefits under state and federal labor laws.

The decision by a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, sitting in Portland, Ore., reversed a lower court’s ruling and would allow the drivers working for FedEx Ground, a subsidiary of FedEx, to move forward with their lawsuits. The appeals court noted that the claims brought by the California and Oregon drivers are among similar cases filed against FedEx in approximately 40 states.

FedEx said on Wednesday that it will challenge the decision.

Although FedEx uses an operating agreement that says its drivers are independent contractors, the appeals court panel noted that the drivers wear FedEx uniforms and drive company-approved vehicles. It also said that
FedEx tells them what packages to deliver and where and when to deliver them.

— Reuters

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