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Li Auto posts record revenue and narrowed losses in Q3 earnings

On Monday, Li Auto’s shares rose 6.42% after the Chinese electric vehicle maker reported third-quarter earnings that beat expectations. Total revenue surged 210% to RMB 7.78 billion ($1.21 billion) from a year earlier, slightly beating analyst expectations of RMB 1.16 billion, according to Benzinga’s market data. The company said it lost RMB 21.5 million in the quarter, compared with the loss of RMB 106.9 million in the same period last year. [Li Auto press release]

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WeChat allows users to access rival platforms’ links

Tencent’s popular messaging app WeChat has opened up access to rival platforms, allowing users to open external links within one-to-one direct messages on WeChat, according to a statement released by the company on Monday. WeChat will also start opening up to shopping links from third-party platforms within WeChat group chats as long as they “ensure security and user experience”. Alibaba and ByteDance are among the Chinese tech giants that have previously accused Tencent of fending off competition by blocking external links within its mega app. The company removed the blocks in response to an order from regulators to end the long-standing practice. [WeChat press release, in Chinese]

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Douyin tests a paywall feature for short video dramas

TikTok sister app Douyin has started testing a payment feature for its short video dramas, a popular format that has hooked viewers with fast-paced plots and soapy relationship sagas. Users can view the shows for a fee starting from RMB 1 ($0.16) per episode or at a discounted flat fee for the whole series. The format has also seen a rapid rise on TikTok rival Kuaishou (Kwai), which claims a daily short drama viewership of more than 210 million on the app. [Tech Planet, in Chinese]

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Regulators asked Didi to plan to delist from the US: report

Chinese regulators have asked Didi to propose a plan to delist from US exchanges due to concerns about leaking sensitive data, Bloomberg reported Friday, citing unnamed sources. The possible options for the proposal include a straight-up privatization or a secondary listing in Hong Kong after delisting in the US, the report said. Didi’s shares fell 2.84% to $7.88 on Friday. [Bloomberg]

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Vendors to be banned from using personal payment codes on WeChat and Alipay for business use

Vendors will be banned from using personal payment codes on WeChat and Alipay to receive money for business purposes from next March, according to a notice issued by the People’s Bank of China. Individual accounts with “obvious characteristics of business operations” will be changed to business accounts. Such codes are prohibited from being used for “remote non-face-to-face” payment collection. Personal static payment codes are widely used by small merchants in China for daily transactions. The central bank told local media on Saturday that changes are being made in order to control the financial risks involved in using the static code, adding that consumers’ shopping experience won’t be affected. [Shanghai Finance, in Chinese]

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Xiaomi to set up electric car manufacturing plant in Beijing

Consumer electronics brand Xiaomi will set up an electric car manufacturing plant and establish its auto unit headquarters in the Beijing Economic and Technological Development Zone, according to a statement published by authorities in the capital on Saturday. The factory will have a production capacity of 300,000 vehicles with mass production scheduled for 2024, local authorities said. The Chinese smartphone giant has backed a slew of car-related startups this year as part of its RMB 10 billion ($1.52 billion) investment plan to build a complete auto supply chain. [Beijing E-Town statement, in Chinese]