Baidu, the largest Chinese search engine is rumored to have invested in group buying vertical 36tuan.com, right after another similar service Miqi.cn announced its $1.5m Series A round of funding from DT Capital Partners
Apart from 36tuan and Miqi, Jumei.com which is competing in the same forefront has also raised US$ tens of millions from Sequoia in March of this year.
Founded by serial entrepreneur Tsinghua graduate Su Haizhen in 2010, 36tuan now claims over 1 million registered users with about 100 staff.
People are saying group buying market is seeing an imminent bubble bursting maybe by year end when most of the group buying services are dying since it is getting harder to raise money from venture capitals because investors are now more cautious over the group buying market. And many believe that eventually there will be only three major ones survive the winter.
Baidu has been aggressively invested in a disparate set of territories including e-reading (Fanshu.com), travel booking (Qunar.com), ecommerce (Yougou.com, 360buy.com, tg.com.cn, yaodian100.com), online community (jingtime.com) and housing info portal (anjuke.com).