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: founder steps down from CEO post Inc.’s chief executive is stepping down from the top post immediately and will be replaced by a company veteran.

The Chinese e-commerce company

said Thursday that Lei Xu, who served as the company’s president, will take over as chief executive office, succeeding founder Richard Liu, who will stay on as chairman.

“Lei is highly regarded both inside and outside the company, and has been instrumental to driving JD’s consistent stellar business performance and formulating strategic decisions,” Liu said in a release. “I’ll devote more of my time to JD’s long-term strategies and future drivers as we continue to work on the most challenging yet valuable things.” noted in its release that in addition to focusing on long-term strategy, Liu would mentor younger members of management and work on the “revitalization of rural areas” in his role as chairman.’s U.S.-listed shares were off 3.2% in morning trading Thursday.

The transition for comes as Chinese internet stocks have fallen under pressure lately amid concerns about spending growth in China as well as broad tensions between the U.S. and China over listing and auditing requirements.

The company’s U.S.-listed shares have dropped 15.8% over the past three months as the KraneShares CSI China Internet ETF

has lost 16.8% and the S&P 500 index

has declined 6.0%.

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