Tag Archives: Tencent

Tencent latest Business & Financial news from Doug Young, the Expert on Chinese High Tech Market, (former Journalist and Chief editor at Reuters)

INTERNET: Weibo Nets People’s Daily, Passes Twitter

Bottom line: Weibo’s rise from the ashes is likely to be followed by a decline similar to the one after its initial rise, as the current boom in live broadcasting wanes or that part of its business gets stolen by a better product from rival Tencent. 

Weibo links with People’s Daily

A turbo-charged Weibo (Nasdaq: WB) is in a couple of headlines as the new week begins, led by a new partnership with Beijing’s powerful central media that looks eerily similar to one from about 5 years ago. At the same time, the company is also in headlines for passing its role model, U.S. social networking pioneer Twitter (Nasdaq: TWTR), in terms of market value, in a case of the offspring outrunning the parent.

The sub-story to all of this is the huge and sudden explosion of live streaming services in China, which has helped Weibo to rise from the ashes and suddenly become one of China’s hottest companies again. That same live streaming phenomenon is also helping to revive others, such as Momo (Nasdaq: MOMO), sometimes called China’s equivalent of U.S. hooking-up app Tinder. Read Full Post…

ECOMMERCE: Wanda’s E-commerce Foray Running on Empty?

Bottom line: Wanda will continue to operate its ffan e-commerce site for another year, following the departure of its CEO, but could quietly end the initiative afterwards due to lack of synergies with its brick-and-mortar shopping malls.

Success evades Wanda in e-commerce

The headlines have been buzzing this week about the departure of the chief executive of the e-commerce unit Wanda Group, the real estate-turned-entertainment giant with a voracious appetite for global acquisitions. The big theme from the chatter is that the departure of Li Jinling, the unit’s third CEO in 3 years, marks a setback and possibly even presages a death knell for the Wanda initiative into the online shopping realm.

Wanda is speaking out on the subject, saying it never intended to launch a website that would compete directly with the likes of sector leaders Alibaba (NYSE: BABA) and JD.com (Nasdaq: JD). Perhaps that’s true, though that didn’t stop Wanda and its ultra-confident chief Wang Jianlin from boasting of lofty ambitions when it signed up Internet titans Baidu (Nasdaq: BIDU) and Tencent (HKEx: 700) as partners to its ffan e-commerce site in 2014. Read Full Post…

INTERNET: Google Seeks Partner for China Return

Bottom line: Google will get permission from Beijing to open a Chinese version of its app Play Store later this year, most likely through a joint venture with NetEase or Tencent.

Google, NetEase talk China Play Store JV

The glacial return to China for Internet titan Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) is making its debut in the 2017 headlines, with word that the company is in talks to open a Chinese version of its app store with online game giant NetEase (Nasdaq: NTES). That tidbit nicely sets the stage for what’s likely to be a banner year for Google and possibly US Internet rival Facebook (Nasdaq: FB) in their race to see who can be first to plant a tent pole in China. Read Full Post…

INTERNET: Tencent in High-Powered Mapping Investment with Europe’s Here

Bottom line: Tencent’s new investment in Nokia’s former mapping unit Here reflects the Chinese herd mentality to pile into new technologies, but also looks like a relatively savvy way to enter the space by pairing with experienced partners.

Tencent ties with mapping giant Here

Internet giant Tencent (HKEx: 700) doesn’t want to be left behind in the race with rivals Baidu (Nasdaq: BIDU) and Alibaba (NYSE: BABA) into self-driving new energy cars that may someday dominate the streets of both China and the world. That appears to be the message from the latest headlines, which have Tencent involved in a somewhat complicated deal that will give it a small stake in a high-powered mapping company that counts car giants BMW, Daimler and Audi as its main investors. Read Full Post…

IPOs: iQiyi Eyes 2017 Listing, Renren Finally Retires

Bottom line: iQiyi won’t make an IPO next year even though Baidu would like to get the company off its books, while Renren’s privatization marks one of the last buyouts for a US-listed Chinese firm from a wave dating back to last year.

iQiyi reportedly eyes 2017 IPO

The year 2016 is winding down as an unmemorable one for Chinese IPOs, thanks to a rocky start that cast a chill over the entire space. That said, the new year could be a bit more lively, amid signs that China’s securities regulator is opening the gates a bit wider to new offerings. That signal could bode well for offshore listings as well, with word that loss-making online video site iQiyi, controlled by online search leader Baidu (Nasdaq: BIDU), is contemplating such an offering next year. Read Full Post…

FINANCE: WeChat Sips with Starbucks; Alipay in Europe, Australia

Bottom line: Starbucks’ selection of WeChat before Alipay for in-store electronic payments is a symbolic victory for the former, while Alipay’s aggressive global expansion could eventually help it to overtake UnionPay outside China.

WeChat ties with Starbucks

China’s two leading mobile payments services are both in the headlines, led by word of a major new tie-up between Tencent’s (HKEx: 700) WeChat and coffee lifestyle titan Starbucks (NYSE: SBUX). I have to admit that my interest in this particular tie-up is somewhat personal, as I’m a big fan of both of these companies and have been waiting a long time for such a partnership.

But equally significant is the fact that Starbucks chose WeChat before archrival Alipay. That same Alipay is in a couple of its own headlines, both showing how it’s trying to expand abroad to compete with China’s other major electronic payments system, the state-owned UnionPay. One of those headlines has Alipay in a new tie-up in Australia, while the other has it announcing partnerships with four major financial companies to expand its footprint in Europe. Read Full Post…

TELECOMS: Unicom Seeks New Life with BAT Magic

Bottom line: Unicom is likely to choose all 3 of the BAT companies as equity and strategic partners under Beijing’s pilot program to invigorate big state-run companies, but none of the tie-ups will produce meaningful results.  

Unicom eyes BAT partnerships

China Unicom (HKEx: 762; NYSE: CHU), the perennial laggard among China’s 3 major telcos, is reportedly looking for new life by tying up with the nation’s big 3 Internet companies, Tencent (HKEx: 700), Alibaba (NYSE: BABA) and Baidu (Nasdaq: BIDU). I might normally say “so what?” to this particular development, since it seems like Unicom and its 2 fellow state-run telcos are regularly announcing this kind of partnership, always with little or no meaningful impact on their business. Read Full Post…

IPOs: Meitu Aims High with Price Range, Attracts Low-Brow Investors

Bottom line: Meitu’s shares are likely to price and debut weakly due to skepticism about its profit potential from big western investors, but could perform better over the longer term if the beauty app can monetize its large user base.

Meitu sets IPO price range

What’s likely to be Hong Kong’s biggest high-tech IPO in nearly a decade is creeping ahead, with word that beauty app operator Meitu has set a price range for its widely watched offering that puts it within reach of its target to raise $750 million. But a read between the lines shows that this offering could easily price at the lower end of its range, following earlier investor worries that Meitu might have difficulty leveraging its huge customer base into meaningful profits anytime soon.

Meitu’s quandary is hardly unique, in an Internet universe where having huge user numbers doesn’t always translate to big profits. In this case Meitu, operator of an app that lets users tweak selfies to make themselves look more attractive, is quite rich in terms of traffic, with 450 million active users. But it hasn’t found a way to actually make money from that audience, and instead earns 95 percent of its revenue from sales of smartphones that draw people to its app. Read Full Post…

INTERNET: NetEase Outgames Tencent, Porks Up

Bottom line: NetEase’s finish at the top of a global ranking for mobile game downloads attests to its rising status in the sector, while the pork business of its founder Ding Lei also appears to be gaining traction after years of effort. 

NetEase mobile games top Tencent in October

Perennial runner-up NetEase (Nasdaq: NTES) has suddenly vaulted into the champion’s spot on China’s mobile game leader board, unexpectedly passing Tencent (HKEx:) in an important metric for their industry. The surprise move is probably a fluke, and I expect Tencent will retake the top spot in the next rankings for most sales from online mobile game app downloads compiled by App Annie. Still, it does underscore why I’ve previously said that NetEase is probably the most underappreciated company among China’s top Internet players. Read Full Post…

IPOs: Meitu Marches Towards HK Listing, Draws Value Skeptics

Bottom line: Meituan should be able to eventually monetize the vast audience for its selfie app, but may have to settle for a valuation below the $5 billion it wants for its IPO due to shorter-term investor skepticism. 

Meituan banks on beauty for $750 mln IPO

Plans for a Hong Kong listing by selfie app Meitu are steaming ahead, but are also drawing some differing opinions from different sides of the East-West border. It seems Chinese fans of the app that lets users enhance photos of themselves to show their best face have quite a high opinion of this local beauty, believing it could be worth up to $5 billion. But westerners are a tad more skeptical, noting that Meitu now derives most of its money from smartphone sales rather than from anything directly related to the app. Read Full Post…

INTERNET: Xiaomi Stays at Low-End, Tencent Reaches Adulthood

Bottom line: Xiaomi’s Singles Day sales show it’s still dependent on low-end models for its smartphone business, while Tencent shares could be set for a pause as it celebrates adulthood with its 18th birthday.

Tencent turns 18

After a couple weeks’ hiatus, I’m returning to the blogosphere with one item from last week’s Singles Day shopping extravaganza, and another from one of the few major Internet companies that was absent during that festival. In the Singles Day headlines is word from Xiaomi that it topped the list for most sales by a smartphone maker during the shopping fest. Meantime, media are noting that social networking giant Tencent (HKEx: 700) has just celebrated its 18th birthday by announcing it will give out 300 of its shares to each employee. Read Full Post…