Perfect World Co., Ltd., a Chinese online game developer and operator, announced today that it has entered into a definitive agreement to sell Beijing Huanxiang Zongheng Chinese Literature Website Co., Ltd, or PW Literature (Zongheng.com), the entity that operates Perfect World’s Chinese online reading business, to Baidu for a total consideration of approximately RMB191.5 million($32 mn).
PW Literature, launched in 2008, is an online literature platform where readers subscribe to works by freelance writers. It is widely recognized in China that the business model was created by Qidian.com, now a Shanda Cloudary company. Perfect World expected it, apart from being an online literature business, to contribute stories for game development or rights sales.
Online reading has become a must-have business for big Chinese Internet companies, as there’s a large digi-reading user base and online literature is a proven profitable business. Tencent acquired the core team of Qidian.com from Cloudary in early this year and launched a similar one called Chuangshi.