Bottom line: A new alliance between Youku Tudou, Weibo and UCWeb, combined with reports of the imminent resignation of Youku’s CEO, point to a sale of Weibo parent Sina to Alibaba within the next 6 months.
Two new developments involving several Alibaba-backed (NYSE: BABA) assets are hinting at a major new shakeup in the firm’s online video and social networking (SNS) division, which could include an acquisition of stalwart web portal Sina (Nasdaq: SINA) that I’ve been predicting for a while. This particular series of corporate shuffles is quite complex, but does seem to hint that Alibaba is trying to rationalize and synergize some of its major web-based entertainment and SNS assets outside its core e-commerce business. Read Full Post…
Bottom line: Sina’s award of Weibo shares as a dividend reflects recent strong momentum in Weibo’s business, while Phoenix New Media’s firing of 3 top employees for disciplinary reasons will undermine its news division’s credibility.
Two of China’s leading news portals are in the headlines today, led by word that industry stalwart Sina (Nasdaq: SINA) is giving stock in its Twitter-like Weibo (Nasdaq: WB) unit to shareholders as a dividend. That particular news comes as shares of both Sina and Weibo have soared over the last 2 months, as Weibo finally starts to realize its profit potential.
Meantime, Phoenix New Media (NYSE: FENG) is in more dubious headlines, with word that 3 high-level employees from its news division have been fired for “serious violations of discipline.” There’s no mention of criminal charges in the reports, which cite an internal memo to employees. But it’s a bit noteworthy that the wording is identical to the frequently used phrase for high Communist Party officials being probed for corruption. Read Full Post…
The following press releases and news reports about China companies were carried on September 1. To view a full article or story, click on the link next to the headline.
The following press releases and news reports about China companies were carried on August 16. To view a full article or story, click on the link next to the headline.
Top 3 China Smartphone Vendors Get Combined 47 Pct Market Share in Q2 – IDC (press release)
Tesla (Nasdaq: TSLA) Removes ‘Autopilot’ From China Website After Beijing Crash (English article)
Direct Broadcasting Platform Douyu Raises 1.5 Bln Yuan in Series C Funding (Chinese article)
Bulls and Bears Collide as Weibo (Nasdaq: WB) Surges to Record (English article)
Bottom line: Sina’s latest financials show it could be benefiting from recent woes at Baidu, while JD.com’s results show its growth is slowing as it moves towards its important goal of becoming profitable.
Two of China’s top Internet companies have just reported their latest quarterly earnings, with web stalwart Sina (Nasdaq: SINA) wowing Wall Street with new numbers that show its Twitter-like Weibo (Nasdaq: WB) service may finally be gaining some traction. Meantime, investors were less impressed by e-commerce giant JD.com (Nasdsaq: JD), which continued to post strong revenue growth but remained squarely in the loss column. JD tried to comfort investors by saying its operations are now quite profitable on a non-GAAP basis, but that didn’t seem to change sentiment too much. Read Full Post…
Bottom line: Recent calls for boycotts of KFC, iPhones and McDonald’s by Chinese patriots are unlikely to result in long-term damage for any of the companies, but could become a problem if any of China’s ongoing territorial disputes escalate.
It seems China’s restless patriots are back at work following a 4 year break, venting their latest anger at the US by smashing Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL) iPhones and calling for boycotts of KFC. This particular bout of Chinese patriotism follows a ruling 2 weeks ago by an international court that found in favor of the Philippines in a territorial dispute with China. The last major bout of similar patriotism came back in 2012, and involved another territorial dispute between China and Japan. But in that instance, Beijing gave much freer rein to many of the patriots, which resulted in long-term Chinese sales declines for the big Japanese automakers. Read Full Post…
Bottom line: Reuters decision to put its Chinese-language website on hold is partly a surrender to Beijing, but also acknowledges that new approaches are needed to succeed in the nation’s restrictive media space.
No one else is writing about the latest strategic shift at Reuters’ (NYSE: TRI) Chinese language news site in Beijing, probably because the actual number of headcount reductions is quite small, at less than 10. But the move has huge symbolic significance, since it looks like an admission of defeat to Beijing censors who blocked the site in China more than a year ago. At the same time, the move also represents a certain realism, and the fact that Chinese consumers increasingly get their news via other channels anyhow, most notably social media. Read Full Post…
Bottom line: New court actions by Huawei, Weibo and NBA star Michael Jordan reflect China’s efforts to crack down on white collar crimes that are common but threaten to hamper the country’s economic development.
The headlines are bubbling today with a few notable stories from the courtroom, which spotlight the slow but steady progress China is making against corporate cheats who undermine the nation’s business climate. Leading the news is telecoms giant Huawei, which is chasing a rogue former executive who was already jailed once for stealing company property and tried to continue his illegal ways after being released from prison.
Another headline has a judge ruling in favor of the Twitter-like Weibo (Nasdaq: WB), which accused a software maker of illegally stealing data from its service. Last but not least there’s the NBA, whose legendary Michael Jordan is closing in on a high-court decision that could finally force a rogue sporting goods maker to stop illegally using his trademark. Read Full Post…
The following press releases and news reports about China companies were carried on April 27. To view a full article or story, click on the link next to the headline.
Bottom line: Twitter’s naming of its first China managing director indicates the company is re-thinking its China strategy, and may mark the start of a campaign to get permission to launch a Chinese version of its service.
Nearly a year after the departure of its former CEO, social networking high-flyer Twitter (NYSE: TWTR) has just made a baby peep that indicates it may finally be contemplating a serious move into the heavily censored China market. The move comes in the form of a low-key executive appointment, which had company co-founder and current CEO Jack Dorsey announcing Twitter’s first managing director for China.
Before I predict an imminent arrival of Twitter to China with this appointment, I should stop and say that Twitter’s new path looks similar to one forged by 2 other Internet giants, Facebook (Nasdaq: FB) and Google (Nasdaq: GOOG). All 3 of these companies are currently blocked in China due to information that China considers sensitive on their online services. But Facebook has indicated it wants to launch a version of its social networking site in China, and Google reportedly is taking steps to launch a Chinese version of its Google Play app store. Read Full Post…
Bottom line: Homelink’s new mega funding reflects a recent renewed boom for Chinese real estate in major cities, while Alibaba’s backing of Momo’s buyout could presage a tie-up between Momo and Weibo.
A couple of big fund-raising stories are in the headlines, led by the latest mega-funding for the fast-expanding real estate agent Homelink. Meantime, separate reports are saying that e-commerce giant Alibaba (NYSE: BABA) has joined a group aiming to privatize social networking app Momo (Nasdaq: MOMO), helping to squash skepticism that the buyout offer announced last year might collapse due to insufficient funding.
The only common thread to these 2 stories is that they show big funding remains available for high-growth companies in China, fueled in part by profits being generated by China’s booming real estate market. That boom has been directly responsible for Homelink’s meteoric rise, and seems like a good place to start this discussion of these 2 new mega fundings. Read Full Post…