Baidu wants in on LBS; spurned by Dianping, it has turned to Renren’s Nuomi

Baidu wants in on LBS; spurned by Dianping, it has turned to Renren’s Nuomi

August 14, 2013

by C. Custer

If you’re wondering why Renren’s stock jumped yesterday, it’s because of this. That’s a Sohu IT report written by Lin Fenglei that suggests that according to Lin’s understanding, Baidu has been in talks to acquire or invest in Renren’s Nuomigroup buying operation for the past couple of months, and that talks are now in the final stages. What’s perhaps more interesting is that Nuomi is apparently Baidu’s second choice. The company reportedly preferred to acquire Dianpoing, but when those negotiations fizzled, it turned to Nuomi, which controls around 6 percent of the daily deals market in China. It’s also hemorrhaging money and market share (in late 2012 it had 8 percent of the market) and has been an albatross around Renren’s neck, so the company would presumably be open to selling it. Baidu has certainly been on an acquisition kick lately; splashing big cash on 91 Wireless and PPS, as well as making a major investment in Kingsoft. An acquisition of Nuomi would presumably not because Baidu wants the sputtering daily deals service itself so much as it wants the service’s users, and a platform through which it can integrate its Maps platform and other LBS-friendly tools into some kind of e-commerce offering. If Baidu does buy Nuomi, I’d expect the site to look fairly different by next year. That said, this is all still a rumor as neither side as confirmed that talks are actually occurring. Baidu doesn’t comment on rumors and declined to comment for a Bloomberg article on this topic.

About bambooinnovator
Kee Koon Boon (“KB”) is the co-founder and director of HERO Investment Management which provides specialized fund management and investment advisory services to the ARCHEA Asia HERO Innovators Fund (, the only Asian SMID-cap tech-focused fund in the industry. KB is an internationally featured investor rooted in the principles of value investing for over a decade as a fund manager and analyst in the Asian capital markets who started his career at a boutique hedge fund in Singapore where he was with the firm since 2002 and was also part of the core investment committee in significantly outperforming the index in the 10-year-plus-old flagship Asian fund. He was also the portfolio manager for Asia-Pacific equities at Korea’s largest mutual fund company. Prior to setting up the H.E.R.O. Innovators Fund, KB was the Chief Investment Officer & CEO of a Singapore Registered Fund Management Company (RFMC) where he is responsible for listed Asian equity investments. KB had taught accounting at the Singapore Management University (SMU) as a faculty member and also pioneered the 15-week course on Accounting Fraud in Asia as an official module at SMU. KB remains grateful and honored to be invited by Singapore’s financial regulator Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to present to their top management team about implementing a world’s first fact-based forward-looking fraud detection framework to bring about benefits for the capital markets in Singapore and for the public and investment community. KB also served the community in sharing his insights in writing articles about value investing and corporate governance in the media that include Business Times, Straits Times, Jakarta Post, Manual of Ideas, Investopedia, TedXWallStreet. He had also presented in top investment, banking and finance conferences in America, Italy, Sydney, Cape Town, HK, China. He has trained CEOs, entrepreneurs, CFOs, management executives in business strategy & business model innovation in Singapore, HK and China.

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