Baidu to close its e-commerce platform

Staff Writer
April 1, 2011
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Baidu Inc, China's largest search engine, announced yesterday that it will shut its online e-commerce store, Youa, and switch existing users to other platforms. The move will be carried out next month and Youa's existing sellers will be migrated to Rakuten China and Yaodian100, Baidu has said in a press release. 


The company was quick to quell rumours of Baidu exiting completely exiting e-commerce with a statement made to Reuters which said "This should not be seen as Baidu withdrawing from the e-commerce scene. In fact, we are in research and development on a new e-commerce platform product which will suit users better." 


Youa was set up by Baidu to rival Alibaba's giant online retailer Taobao, but Youa has failed to really find its feet, and Taobao remains the overwhelming favourite platform to buy and sell goods online in China. Based on the total value of gross sales, Taobao currently represents more than 70 percent of China's e-commerce market.


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