Sohu has just reported its fourth quarter result. One thing stood out: it’s online video business has been gaining market share. In terms of time spent, it increased from 3.4% in December 2009 to 13.4% in December 2010, at the expense of the top video portals, i.e. Youku and Tudou. (No wonder Youku’s share price keeps dropping after its IPO.)

Sohu video unique visitors reached 100 million. Management said, Sohu video strength is partly because of an exclusive content deal – Sohu had 23 of the 30 top primetime TV dramas in 2010 and five of these were exclusive. Sohu indicated its video revenue reached US$28 million (based on Youku accounting treatment). Analyst Wallace Cheung of Credit Suisse estimated Sohu’s video business will break even in 2012. He valued Sohu’s online video business at US$581 million (against Youku at US$3 billion).

Other points worth noticing are:

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Sherman So

Author of Red Wired: China's Internet Revolution, the first book to completely survey the nature of China's internet. (http://redwiredrevolution.com/) She previously was the lead China technology reporter...