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E-Commerce

Integrity of Yahoo’s CEO Challenged

Yahoo confirms misleading information on new CEO’s resume.  Yahoo confirmed Thompson’s credentials had been exaggerated in the recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.  The company, which is based in Sunnyvale, California, brushed off the distortion as an “inadvertent error.” Loeb (Third Point Fund) an investor in Yahoo pounced on the misinformation as a violation of Yahoo’s code of ethics ... Read More »

Zhejiang Netsun Revenue and Profit Drop

Are China’s e-commerce businesses running out of ‘steam’?  After Alibaba’s reporting declining growth in its paying customer base, Zhejiang Netsun reports a drop in revenues. Shenzhen-listed online sourcing platform, Zhejiang Netsun released its financial results for 2011. The company reported revenues of US$23 million, down 17% from 2010. Net profit attributable to shareholders in the year was US$5.1 million, a ... Read More »

Baidu, Tencent and Taobao Are China’s Top 3 Websites by Traffic

According to data released by Internet Society of China, the country’s top five websites in terms of unique visitors as of April 27, 2012 were Baidu, Tencent, Taobao, Sina and Sohu. Baidu currently receives average of 584.92 billion unique visitors per week, while Tencent has an average of 465.04 billion unique visitors per week. Taobao gets 193.46 billion unique visitors ... Read More »

Baidu Q1 Revenue Up 75% – Closes JV with Rakuten

Baidu announced its first quarter results for 2012.  Revenues were US$677 million, up 75% over the same period in 2011. Net income attributable to the company was US$299 million, a jump of 76% over the first quarter last year. Diluted earnings per share in the period were RMB 5.38 (US$0.85). The number of active online marketing customers increased 17% to ... Read More »

Alibaba.com Growth Slows – Profit Declines 25%

Alibaba.com Ltd. stated that its first-quarter net profit fell 25% as slowing economic growth and a shift in the company’s business model led to a decline in membership.  Alibaba started to see a softening of financial performance in the first quarter of 2012, which reflected the lower earnings visibility which the company cautioned about in relation to the business model ... Read More »

Alibaba Hires ex-U.S. Official to Lobby in Washington

The Alibaba Group announced it has hired former general counsel of the U.S. Trade Representative Office (USTR), James Mendenhall, to aid its discussions with the U.S. government and industry groups over intellectual property rights protection. Alibaba is currently appealing to the U.S. Government to remove the company’s B2C e-commerce platform, Taobao, from the U.S.’s list of “notorious markets” for piracy. ... Read More »

China to Become Largest Online Retail Market by 2015

According to a report released by the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), China will become the world’s largest online retail market by 2015 with a sale value of US$364 billion.  By 2015, 8% of all retail sales in China will be conducted online according to BCG. There were reportedly 513 million Internet users in China in 2011 – a penetration rate ... Read More »

Alibaba in New Talks with Yahoo?

The leadership change at Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) looks to be prompting a fresh wave of friendly overtures toward partners Alibaba and SoftBank Capital. The Hong Kong-based Alibaba and Japan’s SoftBank have been making efforts to buy back shares from Yahoo. The California company owns 40 percent of Alibaba and 35 percent of Yahoo Japan, of which Softbank is the largest owner. ... Read More »

HC International Records Jump in Profits

Hong Kong-listed HC International has released its results for the year ended 31st December 2011. Revenues were US$69 million, an increase of 38% compared with results in 2010. Net income for the year was US$6.5 million – a jump of five times over 2010’s US$1.3 million. The Beijing-based company’s online services, its largest business segment, generated US$46 million or 59% ... Read More »

Alipay Ventures into Logistics

Alibaba Group’s e-payment subsidiary, Alipay, announced plans to invest US$79 million to diversify its business into the China logistics market over the next three years. The investment will see Alipay unveil handheld devices that can be used to track parcels and accept payments for goods purchased online. The portable devices target China’s collect-on-delivery (COD) market, which according to Alipay, is ... Read More »

German Government Plans to Require Search Engines and Internet Companies to Pay Newspaper Publishers for Content they Highlight

To help struggling newspapers to generate new revenue from online operations, the German government intends to require search engines and other Internet companies to pay publishers whose content they highlight. German publishers are delighted by this initiative, however the announcement set off howls of protest from Internet companies and bloggers, who said the proposal could threaten free speech and stunt ... Read More »

Alibaba Backed Group Stars Express is Bankrupt

Alibaba Group-backed courier firm, Stars Express, announced the company has filed for bankruptcy.  Stars Express was previously a delivery service provider listed on Alibaba’s B2C arm, Taobao.  According to a statement release by Stars Express’ founder, Chen Ping, his personal investment of US$7.9 million as well as Alibaba’s US$11 million investment have both been lost. Alibaba first announced the purchase ... Read More »

Alibaba Group Proposes Privatization of Alibaba.com – Makes Offer to Minority Shareholders

Alibaba Group (the Offeror) and Alibaba.com are taking Alibaba.com private and have made an offer to minority shareholders of HK$13.50 per share in cash, which implies a premium of 60.4 percent over the 60-day average closing price of Alibaba.com shares, and a premium of 55.3 percent over the 10-day average closing price. A major factor driving Alibaba Group’s decision to ... Read More »

Baidu Beats Profit Forecast

Baidu beat Wall Street’s earnings estimates as its revenue grew more than 80 percent year-on-year in the fourth-quarter.  Baidu said it expects first-quarter revenue of $666.5 million to $688 million.. Baidu has expanded its dominant position in China’s Internet search market ever since Google decided in 2010 to relocate its search engine to Hong Kong following a standoff with the ... Read More »

Yellow Pages: Debt Warning Sends Yell Shares Plummeting

Yell shares slumped after it reported plunging revenues and warned of future debt issues.  In the quarter ending 31 December 2011, Yell’s revenues fell 15.1 per cent to £382.8 million, primarily driven by a 22 per cent drop in its print and other directory revenues to £268.9 million.  The firm did see an encouraging rise of 111.8 per cent in ... Read More »