qiyi-logoIs Chinese online video service getting more complicated or more clear? as Gary Wang, CEO of Tudou predicted, the threat would eventually come from the big guys. Qiyi, Baidu’s online video service is about to launch in March. With $50 millions investment confirmed, the reason for Baidu launching Qiyi is simple, as Gong Yu, director of Qiqi said to a Chinese media: 30%-50% traffic to existing Chinese video sites is driven from Baidu.

Not interested in UGC

Qiyi will be following Hulu’s model. The User-Generated Content (UGC) is not something we are interested in at all, Gong Yu said. Qiyi will focus on High-Definition, Copyrighted video content and the revenue will be from the video-advertisement. Gong said to Sina, “we are developing a powerful advertisement publishing system which will allow us to deploy proper ads according to the user’s profile, such as location, gender, income etc.”

Who is the competitors

“We are not competing with any of existing online video service in China,” Gong said, “although some of them are trying Hulu’s model as well.” Sites like Tudou, Youku, Sohu Video etc started with UGC but recently also spent millions of money on buying licenced content. “It is very difficult to operate the service in both models (UGC and Hulu), and it must have business focus.” when Gong is asked who will be competitor, Gong said, “probably Tencent, it has not really joined this market though.

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Qiyi has around 90 staff (1/3 of which were actually working for other video sites) and plan to recruit 200 more in near year. In March when it is launched, it is expected to host +1,000 licensed movies, +1,000 TV series along with thousands-hours long cartoon, documentary, TV programs etc and some of the content will be exclusive.

We are waiting… waiting for Qiyi’s official launch and waiting for the response from other giants, such as Tencent…