Shen Haoyu, president of business operations for Chinese
online search engine Baidu, says the company's Baidu Union
advertising service has become one of the company's most
important businesses and that in 2008, the company paid
RMB 400 mln in ad revenues to Baidu Union partners – a
one hundredfold increase over the RMB 4 mln figure from
2002 when it first started the program. Shen also revealed
that Baidu Union plans to release a graphic ad system known
as "Big Dipper" that is currently being tested by some clients.
In the future, clients will be able to sell paid non-search
advertising links through the system, although Baidu said it
would not rule out the possibility of incorporating competitive
bidding into the new system. Shen went on to say that
Baidu Union now has nearly 300,000 registered users.