BEIJING (Reuters) - China’s top search engine Baidu Inc is on the lookout for potential acquisitions and investment opportunities in the mobile and cloud computing spaces, its chief financial officer said on Friday.
“We constantly assess our business needs and are on the lookout in the industry space for what will be a good fit for us,” Jennifer Li also told Reuters in an interview.
She was speaking just hours after the firm offered a glimpse of its upcoming mobile operating system and launched a new mobile application platform aimed at bolstering its presence in the increasingly competitive mobile web market.
Baidu recently faced criticism from China’s state broadcaster CCTV over how easy it was to register and promote fake websites on Baidu. The scrutiny raised speculation among media and analysts that this could lead to tougher regulations.
Li said that Baidu welcomed the scrutiny, as it offered it opportunities to learn and improve its products.
Li said the company’s goals for Internet development in China were in line with that of the country’s regulators.
“The Internet is becoming increasingly influential and everyone recognizes that and I think we have the same goal, which is to make the industry healthy,” she said.
Baidu has about 80 percent of all search market traffic in China, a nation with almost half a billion Internet users. It has been building its market share since Google Inc’s high-profile exit from mainland China this year after a fallout with Beijing over censorship.
Reporting by Melanie Lee; Writing by Kazunori Takada; Editing by Jason Subler