Caixin
Nov 18, 2021 05:23 AM
BUSINESS

Baidu Reports Swing to Loss Despite Better-Than-Expected Revenue

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What’s new: Chinese search engine Baidu Inc. posted a third-quarter loss of 16.6 billion yuan ($2.6 billion), compared with a profit of 13.7 billion yuan a year ago, mainly reflecting a noncash loss on long-term investments.

Quarterly revenue beat market expectations to grow 13% year-on-year to 31.9 billion yuan, driven by cloud and other artificial intelligence (AI)-powered businesses, according to the company’s financial report released Wednesday.

Revenue from Baidu’s core business rose 15% to 24.7 billion yuan, while online marketing revenue climbed 6% to 19.5 billion yuan. Non-online marketing revenue from operations including AI, cloud and autonomous driving gained 76% to 5.2 billion yuan, the company said.

More to know: Baidu’s quarterly loss mainly reflected a mark-to-market adjustment on its investment in short-video app Kuaishou, according to the company. Other costs including R&D expenses and cost of revenues also increased from last year.

Baidu warned that China’s tech sector crackdown and the pandemic would affect its advertising sales in coming quarters. The company expects fourth-quarter revenue of between 31 billion yuan and 34 billion yuan, representing a growth rate of 2% to 12% year-over-year.

"Our ad spend has been impacted by sectors like education, real estate and home furnishing, travel and franchising as we expect this headwind to continue in the near term," Chief Executive Robin Li said on a conference call.

Quick Takes are condensed versions of China-related stories for fast news you can use.

Contact reporter Han Wei (weihan@caixin.com) and editor Bob Simison (hello@caixin.com)

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