China’s most famous company is a sprawling conglomerate of disparate businesses, but key decisions about the company’s direction and strategy reside within a small group of key executives. Here are the six that matter most.

Jack Ma, Alibaba’s founder and executive chairman, is stepping aside as chairman to pursue philanthropic endeavors, particularly related to education. Though he denies Alibaba is about Jack Ma, as long as he’s around he will be a force in its direction. A big fan of recently deceased kung-fu novel writer Louis Cha, Ma’s fondness for the genre has spurred a whole office culture of martial arts nicknames at Alibaba.

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