The battle for online viewers in China heated up again today with Tencent’s announcement of a tie-up with HBO. The deal will see a number of shows from the American subscription channel, such as Game of Thrones and The Newsroom, streamed in China. They’ll be available soon on the Tencent Video site. All the violence, nudism, and sex scenes in Game of Thrones will make it tough to edit for approval in China. It will likely involve a number of cuts. A Tencent representative declined to comment on the record about this issue.
Jane Poynter, co-founder and chief executive officer of World View Enterprises, revealed that the company recently gained a new round of investments and its investors included the Chinese Internet technology giant Tencent. Focusing on the research and development of space travel business, World View operates high-altitude balloons that offer an accessible and affordable way to access near space. The company plans to launch a near space travel service in 2016.
Korean mobile game designer 4:33 Creative Lab has attracted fresh investment from Tencent and Line Corp, according to BeSUCCESS. The dollar amount was undisclosed, but BeSUCCESS puts the figure north of US$100 million. Tencent, Line, and Korea Investment Partners jointly set up a consortium in which Tencent contributed about US$110 million, according to Business Korea. After the investment made through the consortium, Tencent’s stake in 4:33 Creative Lab comes out to 25 percent. 4:33 Creative Labs says it will disclose more details about the consortium later this year.
Tencent released its third quarter results for 2014 yesterday and, as analysts predicted, its growth in mobile games has slowed. In fact at RMB 2.6 billion (US$424 million) this quarter’s mobile gaming revenue is actually down compared last quarter, although Tencent blames that mostly on “delayed launches of upgrades.” I’ve written quite a bit about why I think the mobile gaming market in Asia is overhyped, so I don’t want to rehash any of those arguments here.
The number of internet users on Earth recently surpassed three billion, and nearly half of them – 1.35 billion – are on Facebook, according to social media agency WeAreSocial. That’s roughly equal to the entire population of China. Ironically, very few of Facebook’s users actually live in China, where the government has blocked the behemoth social network for several years. Tencent reigns supreme instead, taking up three of the top five spots for social platforms with the most monthly active users in the world.
HAINAN, China-Internet giant Tencent Holdings Ltd. is getting help from International Business Machines Corp. to attract business customers, as the Chinese company diversifies its offerings beyond games and online communication. The companies said they signed a preliminary agreement to develop cloud-based offerings that would be provided by Tencent to sectors like banking, retail and health care, including services like management tools and analytics. The offerings will be run from Tencent data centers, the companies said, though Tencent has the option to use an IBM data center in Hong Kong.
HAINAN, China–Internet giant Tencent Holdings Ltd. is getting help from International Business Machines Corp. to attract business customers, as the Chinese company diversifies its offerings beyond games and online communication. The companies said they signed a preliminary agreement to develop cloud-based offerings that would be provided by Tencent to sectors like banking, retail and health care, including services like management tools and analytics. The offerings will be run from Tencent data centers, the companies said, though Tencent has the option to use an IBM data center in Hong Kong.
If you’re a successful Chinese mobile startup, I’ve got some good news: Tencent wants to help you. As part of a recent event celebrating the 5.0 release of its mobile app platform Yingyongbao, the company has announced what it calls its “double-hundred plan.” According to Tencent social media services group VP Lin Yongtao, the double-hundred plan stipulates that over the next three years, Tencent will direct 10 billion user visits to 100 Chinese startups via its open platform, although the startups in question must be valued at RMB 100 million (US$16 million) or more.
Tencent has made a new social play in the same vein as Snapchat to appease China’s “post-90s” youths. The web giant made a fresh US$20 million series A investment into Blink, a new photo sharing and messaging app out of China. Sequoia Capital, H Capital, ZhenFund, and Innovation Works also participated in the round, according to Techweb.
(UPDATED on September 29: Tencent has just bought US$100 million in extra shares in 58.com, which effectively takes its stake to 24 percent from the previous 19.9 percent. The article’s title and timestamp is updated also. The original article was published on June 27.) Chinese web giant Tencent (HKG:0700) – now best known as being the maker of WeChat – announced today that it’s paying US$736 million for a 19.9 percent stake in 58.com (NYSE:WUBA), which is China’s answer to Craigslist.
According to China’s Caixin (hat-tip Forbes ), the new division will make use of Tencent’s existing intellectual property from its gaming and comics divisions. Among the seven films that Tencent claims are currently in pre-production, four of them originate from one of the company’s video games. It’s also working on an adaptation of Mo Yan’s novella “Treasure Map.” Tencent COO Ren Yuxing said in a statement that the company aims to merge content across its numerous branches, while creating a movie viewing experience that integrates both the online and offline worlds.
Tencent has signed a deal with western tech blog The Next Web to be the latter’s exclusive content partner for Greater China. The announcement published today says Tencent has exclusive rights to translate The Next Web’s content into Chinese. The new site for all translated content can be found here , under the umbrella of Tencent’s existing QQ Tech website. No financial dealings were discussed in the announcement. In February 2013, Tencent signed a similar deal with US-based Business Insider.
Alibaba will be the third-biggest internet company in the world by market cap if analysts’ estimates hold up. It will surpass both US ecommerce giant Amazon and Chinese rival Tencent. Chinese companies take up four of the top 10 spots and make up three of the top six. Baidu (NASDAQ:BIDU) sits at number six, while JD (NASDAQ:JD) rounds out the top 10. Google (NASDAQ:GOOGL) leads by a long shot with nearly twice the market cap as runner up Facebook (NASDAQ:FB).
The recent departure of tech executive Zhang Yaqin from US software giant Microsoft made quite a splash, even triggering speculation from experts about the possible end of an era when top Chinese tech professionals considered overseas multinationals the favorite option for employment. The news of Zhang, former Microsoft Corporate vice president and chairman of Microsoft Asia-Pacific R&D Group (ARD), “defecting” to Chinese search engine powerhouse Baidu Inc came on September 8.
Tencent has introduced in-store mobile payments in WeChat, its popular mobile messaging app, for nine retail chains across China. As Pingwest reports, Chinese WeChat users will spot a new “Small Payments” (shuaka, or “swipe card” in Chinese) feature inside the “Wallet” section of the app. Pressing the icon and entering one’s password for WeChat Payments will subsequently generate a QR Code or a barcode that retailers can scan to accept payments for in-store purchases.
China’s biggest internet company Tencent has signed a deal to buy a stake in Sinopec’s sales and marketing arm, according to MarketWatch . This gives Tencent access to the oil giant’s retail operations across China. The maker of WeChat is one of several investors involved in the deal with China’s biggest oil company. The deal is worth RMB 107.1 billion (US$17.44 billion) from 25 new investors, which also include insurance giant PICC, and asset management firm Munsun. Each company can own up to a 2.8 percent stake.
Sinopec has signed a framework cooperation agreement with Tencent aimed at cooperation in non-oil businesses. According to the agreement, Sinopec and Tencent will work together in various sectors, including business development and promotion, mobile payment, media campaigns, O2O businesses, map navigation, user loyalty management, big data application, and cross-marketing. Financial terms of the deal were not announced.
Apple announced it will introduce Apple Pay, an NFC-enabled mobile payment service for brick-and-mortar sales, in its upcoming iPhone 6 devices. Apple followers predicted its arrival in the days leading up to Apple’s keynote, but its unveiling yesterday came years after folks first expected the Cupertino-based firm to start eyeing in-store payments. As far back as 2011, Bloomberg published a piece that cited analysts stating the company was working on NFC payment prototypes for small businesses.
China-based Internet service provider Tencent has invested US$70 million in DXY, China’s leading medical, pharmaceutical and life science Web portal, according to Tencent. DXY is set to work with Tencent to seek potential integration between Tencent’s systems such as WeChat and its own platform and will use the funds to develop more medical and healthcare products, the company noted.