Tag Archives: Weibo

latest Financial News of Sina Weibo , by Doug Young, expert of Chinese Business (former Reuters journalist in China).
SINA Corp (NASDAQ:SINA) Business and Financial report

INTERNET: Twitter CEO Exits, China Re-Think Coming?

Bottom line: Twitter’s new CEO is likely to re-think the company’s decision to stay out of China due to Beijing’s strict self-censorship policies, and could ultimately make a play for the market in the next 2-3 years.

Twitter to re-think China under new CEO?

It seems that Weibo (Nasdaq: WB), often called China’s equivalent of Twitter (Nasdaq: TWTR), isn’t the only one struggling these days in the social networking (SNS) realm. The original Twitter has just announced that its own CEO Dick Costolo has succumbed to calls for his resignation due to stagnating growth, meaning his replacement will come under intense pressure to jump-start the company’s prospects. One of the fastest ways to do that would be going to China, leading to the intriguing prospect that Twitter’s road map could bring it to China sooner than many expected under its yet-to-be-named new leader. Read Full Post…

INTERNET: Sina CEO Turns Attention To Company Revival

Bottom line: A major new investment in Sina by CEO Charles Chao indicates he wants to take one last try at revitalizing the company’s core portal business, and might consider a sale if a good offer emerges.

Sina CEO Chao buys big stake in company

The China Internet world has been buzzing this week with speculation over what is driving a massive new personal investment of nearly $500 million in leading web portal Sina (Nasdaq: SINA) by its longtime CEO Charles Chao. I have quite a bit of respect for Chao, who is more of a western-style, bottom line-focused CEO than many of his Chinese Internet peers who run their companies like personal fiefdoms.

But that said, I’ve also previously said that Chao lacks the kind of bigger vision that many of his peers have, and that he should consider stepping aside to make way for some new leadership. Accordingly, perhaps this latest move by Chao augers a return to his company’s core portal business, following his focus over the last few years on building up its recently-listed Twitter-like Weibo (Nasdaq: WB) unit. That could be followed by his exit in a year or two, and even a possible sale of some or all of its remaining core assets. Read Full Post…

INTERNET: Twitter Eyes China Ads, Weibo Eyes Car Services

Bottom line: Twitter’s growing pursuit of business from Chinese advertisers shows it is watching the market for a potential future entry, while a new equity tie-up could see Didi Kuaidi’s hired car services launch on Weibo later this year.

Twitter chases China advertisers

Social networking (SNS) pioneer Twitter (NYSE: TWTR) and its Chinese clone Weibo Corp (Nasdaq: WB) are both in the China headlines today, each taking gambles on different parts of the market. After previously saying that China isn’t a market where it can do business, the original Twitter has quietly begun to court local advertisers, even as its actual service remains blocked in the country. Meantime, Weibo, which rose to prominence after Twitter was first blocked in China in 2009, has announced a relatively large new investment in local hired car services leader Didi Kuaidi. Read Full Post…

News Digest: May 28, 2015

The following press releases and media reports about Chinese companies were carried on May 28. To view a full article or story, click on the link next to the headline.

  • Buffett-Backed Automaker BYD (HKEx: 1211) Plans Up To $1.9 Bln Placement (English article)
  • Blocked in China, Twitter (NYSE: TWTR) Still Courts Chinese Firms For Ads (English article)
  • Sina Weibo (Nasdaq: WB) to Invest $142 Mln in Taxi App Didi Kuaidi (English article)
  • Gucci China Discounts Prompt Lines as Bagmaker Clears Stock (English article)
  • Chinese Airline Juneyao IPO Surges by Limit 44 Pct on Shanghai Debut (English article)

CELLPHONES: Apple Holds China Smartphone Crown, CEO Opens Microblog

Bottom line: Apple’s retention of China’s smartphone crown for a second consecutive quarter is partly due to timing, but also owes to CEO Tim Cook’s new PR campaign that will help to win favor from Beijing and the broader Chinese public.

Apple’s Cook opens Weibo account

Media are fixated today on a new report showing China’s smartphone sales fell for the first time in this year’s first quarter, in a development that shouldn’t surprise anyone due to the market’s supersaturation. But equally impressive in the report is the ongoing surge of Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL), which managed to hold onto its title as the nation’s leading smartphone brand for a second quarter after stealing the crown from the high-flying Xiaomi.

Some may say Apple’s surge is due to timing, since it released its latest iPhones in October, fueling a fourth-quarter sales boom that lingered into the first quarter. That may be partly true, though I personally have to applaud CEO Tim Cook for mounting a very focused campaign to woo both Beijing and average Chinese consumers. In the latest move of that campaign, Cook has just opened his official account on Sina Weibo (Nasdaq: WB), China’s equivalent of Twitter (NYSE: TWTR), as he moves to communicate more directly with customers in one of his most important markets. Read Full Post…

INTERNET: JD Marches Towards Profits, Ties With Tuniu

Bottom line: JD.com’s latest results show it could reach profitability on an operating basis later this year, while its new tie-up with Tuniu looks like a well-conceived plan that reflects a growing wave of equity tie-ups among Chinese Internet firms.

JD’s loss narrows, ties with Tuniu

China’s second largest e-commerce firm JD.com (Nasdaq: JD) has been busy wowing investors these last few days, starting with its latest quarterly ressults that shows it is making strong progress in moving towards sustainable profits. Meantime, the company has also become the largest individual stakeholder in online travel site Tuniu (Nasdaq: TOUR) through its participation in a deal that saw Tuniu raise $500 million by selling shares to a larger group of investors.

Wall Street greeted the pair of news stories with mildly positive reaction, bidding up JD.com shares by 2 percent after the reports came out. The stock has rallied nearly 50 percent this year and is 77 percent above its IPO price from a year ago, as investors grow more bullish on this company that is China’s biggest challenger to the much larger Alibaba (NYSE: BABA). Tuniu shares also got a nice lift from the news, rising 4.5 percent. Read Full Post…

INTERNET: Sina, An Attractive Takeover Target?

Bottom line: Sina stands a 50-50 chance of getting a takeover bid within the next year, as suitors eye it for its low valuation, well-respected name and controlling stake of Weibo.

Sina anticipating suitor?

Leading web portal Sina (Nasdaq: SINA) has become one of China’s perennial Internet underperformers, leading to occasional talk that it might become a takeover target for a larger, better-run peer. Now Sina has just announced its renewal of a “poison pill” plan designed to prevent such a hostile takeover. This particular move looks like a formality rather than indicator of a looming takeover bid, since Sina launched the original plan 10 years ago and perhaps it is now is now set to expire. But the fact that Sina is not only renewing the plan, but doing so in a very public way, indicates it may feel it could become a takeover target in the current hot climate for Chinese Internet M&A. Read Full Post…

INTERNET: Sina Dragged Deeper Into Internet Clean-Up

Bottom line: Shares of Sina and its Weibo unit could come under pressure this week and for the next few months, as the regulator pushes for a clean up of its core news sites amid a broader Internet clean-up campaign.

Regulator clamps down on Sina news sites

A year-old Internet clean-up by Beijing is coming full circle to where it first began, with word that regulators have criticized and warned online stalwart Sina (Nasdaq: SINA) for failing to adequately censor its core web portal business. China Internet followers may recall that this prolonged clean-up began almost exactly a year ago when Sina’s video license was suspended after pornographic content was discovered on its literature and photo-sharing sites. (previous post) That case wasn’t too alarming since video is quite peripheral to Sina’s business. By comparison, this latest case looks a bit more worrisome, since it involves the portal news business that accounts for a big portion of Sina’s core advertising revenue. Read Full Post…

IPOs: China Internets Set For Soft Landing On Wall St

Bottom line: Chinese Internet stocks are likely to see a soft landing after a correction period in the first half of the year, with leaders and high-growth second tier players likely to experience a rebound in the second half.

China Internet stocks headed for soft landing

A new scorecard is casting a worrisome spotlight on the bumper crop of Chinese Internet firms that listed last year, pointing out that more than half are now trading below their IPO prices. The sagging prices continue a trend that I pointed out in my IPO scorecard at the end of last year. That trend has seen shares of many New York-listed Internet firms come back to their offering levels or lower as investors pocketed profits from strong post-IPO rises. (previous post) But rather than label this a reason for worry, I would argue instead this broader wave represents a rationalization of the market that will ultimately see the best-performing names rewarded and the money losers languish. Read Full Post…

INTERNET: Baidu Puts Brakes On Mobile OS, Who’s Next?

Bottom line: Baidu’s temporary halting of updates for its mobile operating system is likely to become permanent, and looks like a smart move as it focuses on more efficient ways to boost its mobile market share.

Baidu stops supporting Yun OS

In a move that seemed inevitable, Internet search leader Baidu (Nasdaq: BIDU) has put the brakes on its 3-year-old mobile operating system (OS) that was sapping big resources with little or no chance for long-term success. The move comes just a month after Baidu trumpeted the growing contribution of mobile revenue to its overall business, surpassing traditional desktop PC search revenue for the first time in December. There’s no mention in Baidu’s latest quarterly report of how much of its mobile search revenue came from smartphones equipped with its self-developed mobile operating system, Yun OS, but I suspect the answer was “very little”. Read Full Post…

MULTINATIONALS: Apple Watches China, Cools With Haier

Bottom line: Apple Watch should debut strongly in China thanks to extensive partnerships with top Chinese retailers and app makers, giving the product instant relevance in the local market.

Apple Watch coming to China

Global gadget leader Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL) has been in the local tech headlines nonstop these last few days, wowing Chinese fans with a customized version of its new Apple Watch that will debut in China next month as part of its global launch. Pundits are mixed on how the watch will fare in China, but I expect it should do quite well thanks to inclusion of China’s hottest apps together with the company’s own strong reputation for well-designed, cutting-edge products.

In a separate but probably related Apple headline, media are also reporting a new smart air conditioner that the company has developed with local appliance leader Haier (HKEx: 1169) will also debut in April. Apple first announced this alliance last June as part of a broader smart device alliance under the  name of HomeKit, and I suspect the Apple Watch will be usable with these new air conditioners. Read Full Post…