One way to tell if a western startup is really hot, could be just checking if it gets many copycats in China. It’s reported by BusinessInsider that Tumblr’s to raise $75 million to $100 million at a valuation $800 million or more. So fortunately or unfortunately depending on which side you are at, Tumblr has to be hot in China.
Here is a roundup of those copycats/likers.
Diandian, is said to be the best copy of Tumblr. Founded by Xu Chaojun who has an impressive career path, Diandian has raised $10million and claimed 1 million users by June. It is also the most controversial one, not because Xu is from Shanda which also launched Tuita, the competitor of Diandian, but also it is a project of Innovation Works which supposedly should spend money on real innovation instead of copycats. But Xu obviously does not want to be a copy of Tumblr forever, he said Diandian would walk on its own way with focus on localization and mobile usage.
Tuita is a project incubated by Shanda. We just reported days ago that Tuita’s to raise tens of millions USD in Series A funding. The strength for Tuita is, of course the resource from Shanda group. Currently it has integrated with Shanda’s own service such as Ku6 for video, Xiami for music, Shanda online Literature for ebook reading. The most interesting part is that, according to an insider at Shanda, he said Shanda was actually quite upset by Xu Chaojun’s Diandian as he was supposedly to lead a project like Tuita for Shanda.
Qing Weibo is produced by Sina as a complementary product for its Weibo. Unlike Tuita which describes itself Rich-Weibo, Sina introduce its Tumblr as Lite-Weibo (as Sina Weibo is now more like a complex social platform). I still don’t really get the idea why Sina should spend that effort on the light version as its Weibo also allows users to publish rich-media content such as image, video, music etc. It might be more attractive to young generation or creative user group which is the core user base of Tumblr, but how Sina is going to pitch Lite-Weibo to that niche market in near future, I don’t know.
Lofter.com is rumored to be the Tumblr of NetEase. NetEase, as one of the leading Chinese portals, is losing the Weibo war as Sina and Tencent are clearly the top 2 players. But it does not want to give up and seems to shift its resource to the rich-weibo market which is still at early stage.
iFeng Kuaibo is another Tumblr liker developed by iFeng, the portal by Phoenix New Media, a global leading new media company. One of the reasons Sina is able to make its Weibo big is that Sina has very strong resource as an online media, so iFeng, as a very popular media, surely wants to give it a try too. The service is currently in private test.
Kuantu, is the first Tumblr liker we reported. It seems now rebranded to Kuandao as its founder team has split. With aforementioned five touch players in the market, the future ahead I guess is not easy.