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Sequoia, Legend back Baidu’s online education platform
Asset Management, Venture Capital
The Chinese internet giant Baidu is about to spin-off its “after school” education platform Zuoyebang, attracting investments from two of the world’s largest venture capital firms.
According to TechCrunch, Zuoyebang has just completed a Series A funding round with Sequoia China and Legend Capital, though how much the two invested into the former student Q&A site is currently unclear.
It’s probably a lot though. Zuoyebang reportedly boasts 50 million registered users, 3 million of which use it on a daily basis to rifle through the 950 million questions and answers the platform currently has on file. It can also be used within 113 schools around China, a huge plus against Tencent and Alibaba in the current war for control over China’s online education market.
This isn’t the first time Baidu spun-off one of its subsidiaries; Baidu Takeout Delivery raised $70 million from the Japanese noodle chain Ajisen Ramen and the Chinese private equity firm The Hina Group earlier this year, while 91 desktop – Baidu’s desktop theme app – was also purged from the mothership in a move widely seen as a promotion of the startup culture.
This is what they had to say regarding the spin-offs:
“This strategy aims to promote the independent quality assets, and to foster Baidu’s open ecosystem.”