Internet Giant Tencent Leads Fundraising Round for Chinese Video Streaming App Kuaishou

| Mar 27, 2017 08:12 AM EDT

Tencent is teaming up with 58.com to help the firm develop its used-goods trade platform, Zhuanzhuan.

Chinese video streaming app Kuaishou received a $350 million worth of investment after a recently finished funding round led by Internet giant Tencent Holdings Ltd., Bloomberg reported.

The move comes as rivals Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and Baidu Inc., which is also a backer of the said app, has poured in investments of up to billions of dollars in video content and services. China's biggest Internet industry players, according to the article, hope to convert the time users spent on the apps into revenues from online advertisements.

Baidu has earlier announced its investment to Kuaishou through an e-mail though it did not mention any valuation.

Kuaishou, which literally means "fast hand," offers services such as Twitter.com's Periscope and Facebook.com's Instagram. The company currently boasts more than 50 million daily active users who watch live broadcasts and short video clips of even the most mundane happenings including noodle-eating.

Currently, an average of around 5 million videos are being uploaded via the app on a daily basis.

The app, unlike rivals Momo Inc. or YY Inc., has a majority of users who live either in smaller communities or in the countryside.

For Tencent  Chairman Ma Huateng, the firm is "a dynamic Chinese mobile Internet product that resonates people."

For the videos of people showing off physical prowess that once dominated the app, Kuaishou was once dubbed as the "Jackass" of China. Now, the video service portal is being reigned over by clips about daily life such as farming, teens doing a dance routine, the homeless eating donated food or workers in karaoke parlors.

Kuaishou also has censors who remove any content they deem sensitive or inappropriate.

With its aim of tapping developing markets such as Thailand and Indonesia, the company is poised to expand its services abroad, especially in rural communities.

The firm, which was first launched in 2011, also competes with Miaopai, an app that lets users share brief videos.

The Beijing-based, Yixia Technology-owned rival has raised a $500 million worth of investments last November. The funding round was led by the Shanghai Media Group and Sina's Weibo Corp.

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