This is the original quote from the Bloomberg article breaking the story: "While the Alibaba group has prepared financing for a possible offer, it hasn’t decided on a final price or whether to proceed, the people said."
I haven't seen any quote in any media article indicating Alibaba said anything different than they haven't made a decision whether to proceed with a bid. If anyone has, feel free to post a link.
They have not decided because they most likely in my opinion have not formulated how to get be Fed Regulators and at what price they must pay. They prepared financing? Oh yea they want to make a move just how is the question. Also if they know how they may want to be the last bidder.
IMHO, they would want to proceed with a non-hostile bid. And if that's the case, from a negotiation point of view, they have to make themselves appear somewhat indifferent. Why else would they meet with pe firms to line up funding and then let someone else acquire a 20% stake?