Top Chinese search engine Baidu.com (BIDU) says it now plans to enter the Chinese e-commerce market by building a consumer-to-consumer Internet service.
"We are very excited to enter the rapidly growing Chinese e-commerce market," said Robin Li, chairman and chief executive officer of Baidu. "Baidu's extensive user base and rich experience in Chinese language search makes e-commerce a natural step for expansion."
Search engines already play a critical role in the Chinese e-commerce market. According to iResearch, 49% of China's current C2C users conducted searches before visiting e-commerce sites. Baidu has already established a new department dedicated to the development of innovative e-commerce technologies. The company plans to continue talent recruitment and launch the C2C service in 2008.
"In China, e-commerce is still in the early stages of development," continued Li. "With Baidu's high user traffic, popular community platforms, cutting edge technology and commitment to providing users with the best Internet experience, we are confident that Baidu will become a leader in the Chinese e-commerce space."