Qihoo 360, the Chinese online security solution provider which now also runs head-to-head with Baidu, announced today a new partnership with a less well-known search engine dubbed Jike.com in a deal that Qihoo’s new search initiative would have access to a drug database provided by China’s State Food and Drug Administration via Jike.com.

So while you’re searching for a certain drug approved by China’s State FDA on So.com, the service will return structured information including drug’s official name, approval number, the pharmaceutical firm’s name and address and so forth. The feature was still under private test and not made available to public yet.

The database has indexed more than 188 thousand drug entries.

For those who have no clue to Jike, it’s also a search service created by China’s state-owned media People Daily and headed by Deng Yaping, one of the most greatest woman table tennis players in history ( 4 time Olympic gold medalist), the service was hailed as an important step of People Daily’s omni media strategy.

Jike was rumored recently to cut off 50 or so staff, or about 5% of its total headcount of around 500. After a year and a half’s operation, the service still couldn’t make its way into Chinese netizen’s desktop. According to Chinese Internet market researcher CNZZ, Jike to date grabbed less than 0.01% market share.

Speaking of the potential competition between So.com and Jike.com, Qihoo 360 said that its partnership principle lies in the purport of providing customers with credible results while potential competition; partner’s size and background are not the primary focus.

Qihoo launched its own search engine in the middle of last year and was really at it. It replaced Sogou as the second largest player in search market and sent Baidu’s stock on a downward train.

Baidu has long been criticized for its loose control over medical scam ads, even China’s state TV accused the company of letting unlicensed medical suppliers bid for higher ranking on its search results. With the new partnership, Qihoo certainly put up a nice show to lure away users from Baidu. The largest search offering in China is now in a dilemma of either to maybe lose users if takes no action to fight back or to lose real money if vigorously rectifies medical ads.

Image credit: 360 Search

Listener of startups, writer on tech. Maker of things, dreamer by choice.

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