The co-founder and executive chairman of the Alibaba Group, Jack Ma, set into motion his retirement plans on his 54th birthday on Monday, handing over the reins of the $400 billion company to CEO Daniel Zhang.

The Chinese entrepreneur addressed his retirement plans a few days earlier, stating that he planned to return to teaching, his first love. In an interview with Bloomberg at the Xin Philanthropy Conference in Hangzhou, Ma also spoke about the lesson he learnt from fellow business magnate Bill Gates.

“There’s a lot of things I can learn from Bill Gates,” he said. “I can never be as rich, but one thing I can do better is to retire earlier.”