Tuesday, September 30, 2008

LG electronics to stop advertising on Baidu's MP3 channel

Until the lawsuit is resolved, LG won't advertise on
mp3.baidu.com. The move seemingly is in response to
a boycott call by the music groups who are the
plaintiffs. Other major customers advertising on the
channel are Huiyuan Juice, Philips, Tencent and Kingsoft.

Teaming up with Japanese mobile provider

Japanese mobile provider Willcom Inc. said Tuesday
it will provide information services for Chinese
visitors to Japan in cooperation with Baidu, China's
largest search engine.

As a first step, the Japanese personal handy-phone
system operator will start leasing its handsets to
Chinese tourists and business travelers by the end
of this year. The two companies will also cooperate
in launching Chinese-language call center operations.

The number of Chinese visitors to Japan reached an
all-time high of 943,400 last year, but there is
only a limited amount of information available for
Chinese people visiting Japan, they said.

In the future, the two companies plan to provide
shopping and restaurant information in Chinese via
Willcom's handsets.

A Baidu official said it is considering distributing
Chinese-language content on the PHS network if
relations with its Japanese partner further strengthen.

With the partnership, Baidu aims to expand its
operations in Japan, while Willcom hopes to popularize
its PHS mobile network system in other Asian countries,
including China.

Monday, September 29, 2008

C2C platform launching at the end of the year

Li Mingyuan, general manager of the e-commerce
department of Baidu.com, said on September 25
that the company was through its last stop of
the roadshow of attracting businesses for its
C2C platform in Shanghai. And Baidu will
officially put the C2C platform into operation
at the end of this year.

Baidu has been luring businesses in big cities
like Beijing, Ningbo, Guangzhou, Nanjing, and
Shanghai. And it has reached thousands
of local sellers in these cities.

Spokesperson for Baidu.com said that Baidu hoped
its C2C platform can gather more big sellers.
This round it is expected to enlist Taobao sellers
with three diamonds and above.

Baidu says that it does not hope to undermine
the foundation of Taobao.com, the biggest C2C
website in China, it just wants more Taobao
sellers to set up online stores on its platform
at the same time. And in the future, it will
enlist more online sellers.

Tie up with UiTV

China's largest Internet Television platform.
Baidu will contribute assets related to the
operation of Baidu Internet TV Channel to UiTV
in exchange for an 8.3% stake in UiTV and
US$15 million. Following this transaction,
Baidu Internet TV Channel will continue to be
hosted on movie.baidu.com and it will be operated
by UiTV. This channel is not related to
video.baidu.com, Baidu's video search business.

Baidu Internet TV Channel is a website where
Internet users can download movies and TV programs.
Through cooperation with the majority of China's
online movie and TV service and content providers,
including TVB, Enlight Media and many others, Baidu
Internet TV Channel has China's largest database for
authorized copy-righted movie and TV program downloads.
Baidu Internet TV Channel operates an advertising-based
revenue sharing model that allows users to download
copy-righted video content for free. Baidu's independent
director, James Ding, is the chairman of UiTV and owns a
minority interest in that company.

Xuyang Ren, Baidu's vice president of marketing and
business development said, "This transaction will
help UiTV become even more competitive in the Internet
television market thanks to the expanded exposure and
influence of this collaborative platform. It also
offers Baidu the opportunity to benefit from UiTV's
vast future growth potential." Mr. Ren continued,
"Together we can leverage our respective strengths
to provide a better online movie and television
experience for Chinese Internet users."

Song Lin, president and chief executive officer of
UiTV, added, "Our cooperation with Baidu will establish
a strategic relationship that allows both parties to
capitalize on UiTV's strong technical and operational
capabilities. We endeavor to provide the best quality
experience to Baidu's Internet TV Channel users and
expect the new partnership will create a more effective
online advertising platform for our online marketing

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Baidu Mall opening soon

Baidu will open its e-commerce platform (mall.baidu.com)
to pre-approved sellers at 8 p.m. on September 25, reports
Sohu. Baidu's 10,000 sellers will be able to access the
platform to activate online payment tool "Bai Fu Bao,"
complete real-name account information and set up their
stores. A post on Sohu's IT community said the platform
will offer free services similar to Taobao's paid product
"Wang Pu," and that Baidu has already signed logistics
partners and may rank products by popularity.

Baidu had more than 40,000 applicants for its online
trading platform by September 11.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

MP3 deep-linking criticized

The report below implies Baidu is directly hosting music on its
proxy hosts, as Zhangsou used to do. But there is no proof -
pirates changing website names in response to takedown notices
is quite common.

The register report

Joint lab with Nankai University

Baidu and Nankai University in Tianjin unveiled
the "Baidu – Nankai University Parallel and
Distributed Software Labs" at Nankai University
yesterday. Both parties will cooperate on
development for parallel and distributed algorithms,
administration of vast data sets, and in other fields.

The joint laboratory will make use of Nankai's
experience and superiority in parallel and distributed
computing and applications, intelligent computing,
mass data storage systems and other technological and
computing fields, as well as Baidu's experience in the
technologies and their market applications, R&D for
online storage, search, administration and applications
based on self-owned R&D, and on technology-to-product

Baidu threatens to sue Alibaba over false news

Alibaba Group published postings on September 14
with misleading titles about Baidu's "PR protection
agreement" with food product manufacturer Sanlu on
the websites of Taobao and Alibaba, reports Sohu.
The reports said Sanlu milk powder planned to sign
a RMB 3 million advertising agreement with Baidu
if Baidu would remove Sanlu's negative search results.
Baidu said it retains the right to sue Alibaba Group
for defamation, the report said. Baidu also announced
on its online forum channel Baidu Post Bar on
September 13 that it refused to sign Sanlu's proposed
PR protection agreement.

Alibaba Group welcomed the Baidu lawsuit and said that
revealing truth to the public is its responsibility,
reports Sina. Alibaba deleted the reports on Tuesday
night from the Taobao.com and Alibaba.com Ltd. homepages,
reports ChinaByte.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Baidu's search user market share increases

Baidu.com leads China's search engine market in
2008 with its market share hitting 65. 8 percent,
according to a survey conducted by China
IntelliConsulting Corporation (CIC).

Google ranked second at 22 percent, and
Sogou, at 2.9 percent, exceeded Yahoo!
to take the third place.

The following is a table showing the
detailed market share of Google and Baidu
in different parts of China.

Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou: 27% 60.9%

Coastal Cities: 21.3% 67.9%
Dalian Tianjin Qingdao Nanjing Hangzhou
Xiamen Shenzhen

Provincial Capitals 16.1% 72.2% in Middle
China: Changsha Wuhan Zhengzhou Shijiazhuang

Major Cities in West 16.1% 68.3%
Chengdu Chongqing Xi'an

In Beijing and Shanghai, Baidu's market share
dropped by 2.5 and 1. 2 percentage points,
respectively, while in Guangzhou, it increased by
2.2 percentage points.

On the contrary, Google's market share went up 2.7
and 0.6 percentage points, respectively, in Beijing
and Shanghai, and declined 5.3 percentage points
in Guangzhou.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Recruitment test question paper leaked

A user of the virtual community site Tianya Club
(tianya.cn) claimed in a September 14 posting that
he had spent half of his monthly living expenses
to purchase the content of Baidu's paper
recruitment test, to be held on Wednesday.
The user, registered as "wangwj1985", posted a
sample question and a link to download the complete

[Editor's comment: Looks a job at Baidu is in heavy
demand to be worth this much attention.]

Friday, September 12, 2008

Baidu launching online payment and C2C soon

Baidu has developed its online payment service,
Baifubao, to be launched soon. So will its C2C
platform, which is under private pilot test already.

China’s online payment market is dominated by
Alipay, under Alibaba Group. According to iResearch,
in second quarter of this year, Alipay took about
51% share of online payment market in China, followed
by Tenpay, an online payment service by Tencent,
China UnionPay’s online payment service and 99Bill.

According to Alipay, by May 2008, the registered users
of Alipay has exceeded 80 million with over
RMB 350 million daily transaction volume and 1.5 million
daily transactions. Besides merchants on Taobao and
Alibaba, there are over 460,000 e-commerce merchants
using Alipay on their sites.

Price target reduced

Pacific Crest’s Steve Weinstein this morning cut his
price target for Baidu to $360 from $405, citing
“market conditions and the potential lack of Q3
upside.” He keeps his Outperform rating on the Chinese
Internet search engine.

Weinstein writes that Q3 results are likely to miss
his revenue estimate of $140 million, but nonetheless
likely exceed the Street consensus of $134 million.
He now thinks the number will be about $135 million.
He thinks EPS will be about $1.27, 5 cents below his
current estimate, but 2 cents above the Street.
Weinstein says the company rolled out fee structure
changes in the quarter that should improve quality and
monetization long term, but which “led to a slowdown
of customer acquisitions in Q3.”

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Clickfraud lawsuit

Lawyer Huang Weiling of the Guangdong-based law firm of
Guohui has brought suit against Baidu for fraudulent
practices. Huang alleges that after signing up for
Baidu's "competitive search ranking" services in
September 2005, he began to suspect that Baidu
provided misleading click-through information.
He purchased a click-through monitoring application
which produced results differing sharply from

Social networking sites in China blocking search engines

The blogging site of Chinese Internet portal Sohu,
along with social networking service (SNS) websites
51.com, Xiaonei, Hainei and others, have blocked
Baidu (and other search engines) from indexing the
site content. According to a source at one of the
SNS websites, all of the relatively active SNS
networks are now either blocking search engines
from spidering their sites, or planning to block
them shortly. The reason for the move is to protect
the privacy of users, who typically use their real
names to register with SNS sites.

Susquehanna reiterates Buy ...

saying recent weakness in the stock offers a good entry point.
The firm is reiterating their Positive rating and $444 price

The firm noted that Baidu's CFO, Jennifer Li, attended their
Beijing Management Summit. Commenting on the meeting the firm
said, "During the meetings with investors, Ms. Li expressed
confidence in Baidu's growth momentum in not only the long
term, but also near to medium term. The impact from the
Olympic Games period was in-line with (rather than
underperformed) management's previous expectations, and
business bounced back strongly after the games."

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Campus recruiting

Baidu began its annual recruitment tour on September 10
of over 20 leading universities, including Peking
University and Tsinghua, in an effort to hire over
600 graduates for its 11 technology departments in
2009, reports Hexun. The recruitment, which will
take place in 13 domestic cities, mainly offers
positions in research and development to computer,
software and mathematics majors. Baidu's channel
for campus recruitment went online at
campus.baidu.com on September 5 and has already
received hundreds of applications, said a company
campus recruitment chief. The plan is to hire 600
new grads in 2009.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Taobao blocks Baidu's indexing

Taobao.com has blocked Baidu's search engine from
analyzing and indexing its Web site as Baidu prepares
to launch its own C2C platform. The official reason
is to reduce fraud.

New advertising system to be released

Baidu is set to release a new advertising system called
"Phoenix Nest".

According to an industry insider who has seen the
new system, Phoenix Nest is comparable to Google's
AdWords in terms of functionality. It provides a
number of new functions including domain-targeted
advertisements, keyword recommendation services,
budget planning tools, lowest-price display, and
round-robin advertisement display functionality.
Reporting information generated for advertisers
will include expanded information on statistics
across a number of indicators.

A source at Baidu claims that the new functionality
in Phoenix Nest will help solve the company's previous
problems in providing sufficient data to advertisers.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Baidu has about 192 million users a day

and around 400 million daily searches, per Baidu
sales. Would make Baidu the #2 search engine in
the world, ahead of Yahoo.