This is the fourth post in our series: Discover China’s Next BAT, where we will go over the potential tech giants that are leading China’s IT industry. Stay tuned over the coming month to keep updated on the next ‘BAT.’
iiMedia Research Group, a leading research institute in China, has released a list of leading mobile internet companies based on the findings of a corporate judging panel consisting of global industry experts, influential investors, and public voting with over a million ballots cast.
From that list, we have chosen eight companies we believe will dominate their markets. Previously, we listed the first four. Here is the second group:
5. Xian Yu (闲鱼) – second-hand market
Xian Yu, meaning an idle fish, is a second-hand e-commerce platform. Customers can use their smartphones to run their stores and add promotional voice recordings to sell their products, making the app more like a social app.
Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba invested at least RMB 100 million (US $15.4 million) to launch this platform in June 2014. Alibaba Group’s C2C e-commerce site Taobao recently added a face-to-face trading function called Jianyijian to Xian Yu in December last year and the platform is considering ways of adding more interactive content in the future.
Jianyijian works by allowing buyers to talk face to face with the seller by requesting a Jianyijian transaction. If the seller agrees, the two parties can then further discuss through a chat window in the app. Once the two parties have decided on a time, they will meet in person and the buyer will scan a code generated by the seller.
6. Lagou (拉勾) – Job-seeking platform
Lagou is a Beijing-based job-seeking platform established in July 2013. Lagou.com operates a recruitment website and offers staffing services. The company’s clientele includes Tencent, Baidu, Alibaba Group, SINA, JD.com, Beijing Xiaomi Tech, and Zhaopin.com.
Lagou raised RMB 220 million yuan through series C funding in March 2016 from Hongdao Capital and Chiming Investment Corporation to fund developing products and technology to provide more diverse human resources services.
7. boqii (波奇网) – Pet e-commerce
Boqii, launched in September 2008, is an online pet shopping mall. It provides various services such as companion hotel, medical, beauty, bath for pets and also an online community for information sharing. There are more than 10,000 kinds of animal products sold at boqii. It expanded to O2O services in March 2014 which have since exceeded 100 million yuan in annual sales.
After receiving US$ 10 million in series A funding from JAFCO Asia and Goldman Sachs in 2012, and US$25 million for series B funding from undisclosed investors in 2014, boqii completed series C funding from China Merchants Bank in February 2016. The company says it plans to use the latest proceeds on expanding its services into more cities and adding new products, as well as potential mergers and acquisitions.
8. JOYRUN (悦跑圈) – running app
Founded in 2014, JoyRun’s mobile app allows users to find running partners, share running stats, network with each other and browse related content. This Guangzhou-based runner mobile app has completed US$18 million series B round of financing led by the Arena Capital. The company says it will use the proceeds on technical improvements, expand its events business and monetization.