Sales rose to 50.2 billion yuan (US$7.5 billion) in its first quarter ended June, surpassing the 47.9 billion yuan consensus estimate in a Bloomberg survey.
The bulk of the Hangzhou-based company's revenue came from its core e-commerce business, including the online shopping platforms Taobao, Tmall, and its global business units like AliExpress and Lazada in Southeast Asia, where sales rose 58 per cent to 43 billion yuan from previous year.
Alibaba - one of the most valuable companies in Asia - is benefiting from more Chinese consumers buying an increasing proportion of everything from food to clothing to luxury items online. "Our technology is driving significant growth across our business and strengthening our position beyond core commerce,"chief executive Daniel Zhang said in a statement".
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Revenue in the entertainment business rose by 30 per cent to 4 billion yuan.
Net income attributable to the company's shareholders almost doubled to $2.17 billion, or 83 cents per share.
Revenue from online marketing, which Alibaba calls "customer management" services, topped 26.2 billion yuan, up by nearly two-thirds from 2016.
Alibaba, though, is yet to prove the value of several recent large-scale investments, including US$2.6 billion in department store chain Intime Retail Group, among other brick-and-mortar investments.
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