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Baidu.com, Inc. (ADR) (BIDU): 25 Scintillating Facts About the Internet in China

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Baidu (BIDU)One of the biggest economic stories in recent years has been the breathtaking growth of China. Currently, its Internet sector is one of the fastest-growing sectors in the overall economy. Clearly, this is a promising hunting ground for opportunistic investors.

To help our readers better understand the Chinese Internet landscape, I have compiled 25 facts that should highlight some investing ideas for further research. In compiling the list, I found the social media agency We Are Social’s Guide to Social, Digital and Mobile in China to be extremely valuable.

1. China’s Internet penetration is currently at 42%. In other words, the country has roughly 570 million Internet users. For comparison, the population of the entire United States is 315 million people.

2. 80% of Chinese Internet users are between the ages of 10 and 40. (Source: We Are Social’s Guide to Social, Digital and Mobile in China)

3. There are 420 million mobile Internet users in China. 62% of China’s mobile Internet users are younger than 30. (Source: We Are Social’s Guide to Social, Digital and Mobile in China)

4. The average monthly value of mobile transactions is $800 million — that’s $300 every second. (Source: We Are Social’s Guide to Social, Digital and Mobile in China)

5. China now requires all Internet users to register their names with Internet service providers.

6. Currently, China’s fastest-growing online activities (year-over-year) are:

(Source: We Are Social’s Guide to Social, Digital and Mobile in China)

7. The top searches in 2012 on Baidu.com, Inc. (ADR) (NASDAQ:BIDU) — China’s leading provider of Internet search services — were:

(Source: We Are Social’s Guide to Social, Digital and Mobile in China)

8. China’s online games market is expected to exceed $8 billion in 2014. (Source: Pearl Research)

Social Networks

9. There are more than 600 million users of social networks in China.

10. 91% of China’s netizens use social media compared with just 67% of their U.S. counterparts.

11. Of all of China’s social networks, Tencent’s QZone is the country’s favorite with 44% market share. SINA Corp (NASDAQ:SINA) and Renren Inc (NYSE:RENN) are second and third with about 19% each. Tencent’s Weibo is fourth with 8%. (Source: We Are Social’s Guide to Social, Digital and Mobile in China)

12. As of November 2012, 784 million people were active on Tencent’s QQ (messaging platform) each month. That means 58% of China’s total population uses QQ! (Source: We Are Social’s Guide to Social, Digital and Mobile in China)

13. There are more than 70 million users of social networks for professionals in China. In 2012 the number of people using professional social networks increased by 250%. (Source: We Are Social’s Guide to Social, Digital and Mobile in China)

14. Tianji is China’s No. 1 professional network with 12.3 million registered users. Meanwhile, LinkedIn Corp (NYSE:LNKD) is No. 7 with 2.8 million registered users — China is LinkedIn’s 7th most populous country. (Source: We Are Social’s Guide to Social, Digital and Mobile in China)

Microblogging

15. The microblogging market (or Weibo) in China was worth approximately $79 million in 2012. More than 50% of Weibo users search e-commerce sites after noticing relevant information on Weibo. (Source: We Are Social’s Guide to Social, Digital and Mobile in China)

16. Sina Weibo desktop users in China spend 20% more time on the Internet than Twitter users do in the USA; Sina Weibo mobile users spend 35% more time online than Twitter users in the USA. (Source: We Are Social’s Guide to Social, Digital and Mobile in China)

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