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Technology / Software

Baidu to acquire 91 Wireless for $1.9bn

Chinese search engine firm Baidu has agreed to acquire app store 91 Wireless for $1.9bn, as part of its efforts to expand its core search business and strengthen its presence in the mobile market.

The agreement would enable Baidu to buy 57.4% of Chinese app stores from NetDragon Websoft, with the remainder from other shareholders.

Baidu spokesman Kaiser Kuo told Reuters: "Mobile app stores are an increasingly important entry point to the mobile Internet and are therefore of great strategic interest to Baidu."

NetDragon is said to reportedly scrap the planned spinoff and listing of 91 Wireless on Hong Kong’s secondary Growth Enterprise Market once the acquisition is finalised.

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Baidu’s move comes after acquiring the online video business of internet video provider PPS for $370m in May 2013.

The Chinese search engine is also working on a prototype digital eyewear known as Baidu Eye, similar to Google Glass, which would enable users to make image and voice searches while conducting facial recognition matches.

This article is from the CBROnline archive: some formatting and images may not be present.

CBR Staff Writer

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