Sohu News General Manager Cai Mingjun will leave the company at the end of April to start a blockchain project, which Sohu will invest in, our sister site is reporting (in Chinese).
The report did not mention the sort of blockchain application Cai would be working on. However, at an entrepreneurship competition in February, he expressed his interest in the technology by highlighting its potential for creating assets in the digital world.
Private and public sector development and investment in blockchain projects have increased significantly recently. On March 27, China’s central bank institute launched a platform for developing independent intellectual property rights on the blockchain. On April 13, Tencent’s Pony Ma announced a medical blockchain project in Guangxi that aims to make medical prescriptions tamperproof. Most recently, government-led blockchain initiatives have been launched in Shenzhen and Fujian province.
Cai was one of the earliest Linux researchers in China and participated in the formation of the Beijing Linux Club. He joined Sohu in 2003 and was in charge of research and product development at Sogou. In 2011 he joined Shangrui Network Technology as a partner and CTO. Two years later, he returned to Sohu to lead the development of a content recommendation engine. Since 2014 he has been the general manager of Sohu’s news client.
Sohu’s stock plummeted on April 25 after the company released its quarterly financial results. Its report highlighted growing losses, which the company justified by attributing them to income tax expenses. Despite the company’s losses, it reported a revenue increase of over 20%.