The History of Baidu
Baidu is now the 6th website in the world and the 1st one in China according to Alexa. This is thirteen years after its creation. In China the market share of Baidu is around 80% so we can say that there is a clear domination of Baidu in the country with the biggest number of Internet users (570 millions in the beginning of 2013).
Its creator Robin Li, is the 4th chinese billionaire. According to him, his search engine answers more answers and requests than all the other ones.
Creation of the company
In 1996, Li created the RankDex, a technology similar to the PageRank of Google. According to him, the process was invented before PageRank and Google copied it.
Then after this story, Robin Li raised 1,2 millions dollars and founded Baidu in Beijing in 2000. For him, it was strategic to be based in Beijing contrary to Hong Kong.
At the beginning, Baidu was just integrated into websites like Sohu or Sina. But in 2001, Li decided to make the big launch for everybody, Baidu.com was born. In 2004, he raised again $25 millions and succeeds to have the profitability threshold.
Then the investors of Baidu, thought that it could be great to sell the company to major American companies like Microsoft, Google or Yahoo. Instead of that, Robin Li insisted to make an IPO in New York into the Nasdaq. It was a huge success because the company was then valuated at more than $4 billions.
The situation of Baidu nowadays and the future
It’s been 8 years that Baidu was created. In China, we can say that it’s a real success because as we said earlier, the market share of Baidu is around 80%. The value of the company is also huge : $40 millions mainly thanks to the Baidu SEO and SEM strategy. The competitors are down. There was an initiative of the government to develop a search engine with Xinhua a press agency and China Mobile but for now we don’t hear a lot about that.
For the future, Baidu wants to go international. But it will be really hard because of the competition of Google worldwide and because Baidu has still a service of pirate music.