Chinese search engine giant Baidu Inc (ADR) (NASDAQ:BIDU) is set to make some major strategic adjustments in its global expansion. The company is looking to expand in non-western markets for its global foray. The company has also withdrawn from the Japanese market.
Baidu has pulled the plug on its Japan search service eight years after choosing the market to make it its first global foray. The company is simultaneously making moves into the Egyptian market with its Arabic language website. The company had earlier moved into Brazil and Thailand.
Baidu has avoided competing in the highly competitive Western markets but is making forays into less competitive non-western markets. He entry of Baidu into foreign turfs has been low key. Baidu will have lesser competition and the advantage of superior search and associated search monetization technology. The company has honed its monetization tech and built itself into an extremely profitable company.
The japan search service of Baidu was shut on March 16 due to declining traffic numbers. The foray into Japan was Baidu’s first global foray, but it never took off. The move to stop the japan search service, therefore, should come as no surprise.
The company since the Japan foray moved into the Brazilian and Egyptian markets. By the looks of it, the company seems to be taking its time in launching its new sites in developing markets.
The Japanese experience seems to have taught Baidu to take things slowly when entering a new search market. It is too early to tell if Baidu will succeed in forays into new markets. It is however expected that Baidu should do well in some of the markets. However, the small size of these markets means that they will not contribute much to revenue of Baidu.
For more lucrative opportunities, Baidu will have to look to western markets which it has avoided for so long.