Alibaba IPO Filing: Here’s What We Know

The Alibaba IPO has been filed as the company released the prospectus yesterday (Tuesday) for what is expected to be one of the largest U.S. IPOs of all time.

Alibaba IPOThe document officially lists the IPO as a $1 billion deal, but that number is just a placeholder. Most analysts expect Alibaba to raise more than $15 billion through the IPO, and some optimistic views have that number closer to $20 billion. Either way, the Alibaba IPO will be the biggest U.S. IPO since Facebook Inc.'s (Nasdaq: FB) $16 billion deal in 2012.

While the prospectus is more than 300 pages long, it still leaves many questions unanswered. The company is expected to release further information and addendums to the prospectus as the Alibaba IPO date approaches.

Here's what we know now...

Alibaba IPO Filing: What We Know Now

In the document, the company reported that revenue for the fiscal year 2013 (which ends March 31) was $5.6 billion. For the first nine months of fiscal year 2014, the company had revenue of $6.5 billion. Net income for those two time periods was approximately $1.6 billion and $3.2 billion, respectively.

Alibaba owns an 80% share of the Chinese e-commerce market, which is the second largest e-commerce market in the world.

In 2013, the company boasted more than 231 million active users, and those users exchanged more than $248 billion over Alibaba's platforms in the year. In 2013, more money was spent over Alibaba's network than on Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN) and eBay Inc. (Nasdaq: EBAY) combined.

Alibaba reported that 84% of its revenue comes from its Chinese e-commerce business. Its sites Taobao and Tmall are the most popular of its network of e-commerce sites. International commerce accounts for 12% of the firm's top line. Cloud computing and Internet infrastructure bring in 1.9% of the company's revenue.

The company is actively pushing into the mobile market and reported that 19.7% of its gross merchandise volume in the last quarter of 2013 came from mobile users. In that quarter the company had 136 million mobile monthly active users.

The underwriters on the deal will be Credit Suisse Group (NYSE ADR: CS), Deutsche Bank AG (NYSE: DB), Goldman Sachs Group (NYSE: GS), JPMorgan Securities (NYSE: JPM), Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS), and Citigroup Inc. (NYSE: C).

Alibaba had nearly 21,000 employees at the end of 2013. Of that total, more than 7,300 employees were either engineers or data analysts.

Concerning ownership, Softbank Corp. owns 34% of the company, while Yahoo! Inc. (Nasdaq: YHOO) owns 24%, Jack Ma owns 8.9%, and Joseph Tsai owns 3.6%.

While investors learned a great deal about Alibaba through its prospectus, there are still many questions that they're waiting to hear more about...

Alibaba IPO Filing: What We Still Don't Know

First, the prospectus doesn't give financial details for Alibaba's separate e-commerce sites.

While investors know that e-commerce accounted for 84% of the company's total revenue, they'll want to know how revenue breaks down across its platforms. Its largest sites Tmall and Taobao will be the most noteworthy, along with the company's website payment service Alipay.

Alibaba officials have also not announced which exchange the stock will trade on. Both the New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq are competing for the listing. Likewise, the company did not reveal any information about a potential ticker symbol.

The Alibaba IPO date has also not been announced, which isn't a surprise. Companies will typically announce their exact IPO listing date several weeks before the date. The consensus estimate is that Alibaba could price its shares toward the end of the summer.

Finally, the Alibaba IPO price has not been determined, but again, that is common. Companies will typically set a price range for their shares leading up to the IPO and will announce an official offer price the day before the shares hit the market.

Alibaba won't be the only company profiting from this highly anticipated IPO. These stocks are getting a lift as the Alibaba IPO date approaches...

Will you be investing in the Alibaba IPO? Join the conversation on Twitter @moneymorning using #Alibaba