Baidu (BIDU) Buys Streaming Video Service PPS For $370 Million
Chinese search engine company, Baidu.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:BIDU) has announced that they have acquired PPS.tv for $370 million. This deal complements Baidu’s existing video services like iQiyi. PPS.tv will continue to operate separately as a sub-brand of iQiyi.
Baidu is now claiming that they are the largest online video platform based on the number of total mobile users and video viewing time. iQiyi CEO Gong Yu will become the CEO of the new PPS sub-brand. The current PPS president Xu Weifeng and CEO Zhang Hongyu will remain on the board at the company as as co-presidents.
PPS.tv is known for broadcasting TV shows and movies in China. The content is distributed on PCs and mobile apps. According to website analytics company Alexa, PPS.tv is ranked #554 globally as the most visited website. In China, they are the 95th most visited website. Baidu subsidiary iQiyi is ranked #261 globally and #47 in China.
Baidu’s iQiyi launched in 2010 and was backed by private equity company Providence Equity Partners. Baidu acquired stake in iQiyi from Providence Equity Partners back in November for an undisclosed amount.
Baidu competes intensely against the company Youku Tudou over video streaming services. Youku Tudou is the leading Internet television company in China. Youku Tudou is currently listed on the New York Stock Exchange and was formed in August 2012 after Youku Inc. and Tudou Holdings merged.
“The merger of iQiyi and PPS’s online video business is a major step toward consolidation in the industry,” stated iQiyi CEO Gong Yu. Between the two video websites, they will be able to offer better content to users and more options for advertisers.
The transaction is expected to close in Q2 2013.This article was written by Amit Chowdhry. You can follow me at @amitchowdhry or on Google+ at +AmitChowdhry