China’s internet industry is one of the most active across the globe and as a new report by Abacus, 500 startups, and South China Morning Post shows just why.

The China Internet Report 2018 shows that China tech trinity Baidu, Tencent, and Alibaba, collectively known as “BAT”, are expanding their businesses to every corner, ranging from retail to fintech. Even if they don’t have business in one industry themselves, they invest in or acquire companies that do. For instance, in retail, Baidu didn’t build its own retail operation but invested in Nasdaq-listed Uxin, an online second-hand car trading platform. Alibaba, which is not a part of the sharing economy itself, invested in Didi, ofo, as well as overseas ride-hailing app Lyft.

Chinese internet companies are embracing the notion of “Social+”, to attract new users and retain old ones, according to the report. The Social+ business model focuses on building and maintaining an online community that is expected to drive user engagement. Alibaba-backed e-commerce platform has a post sharing forum where users can share their favorite products, even if they are not sold on Xiaohongshu, beauty tips, and life hacks.

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Jiefei Liu

Jiefei Liu is a Beijing based tech reporter. She focuses on the union of tech and content creation and loves agriculture. You can write to her at Jiefei@technode.com