Aug. 14, 2014, 5:02 PM
Aug. 13, 2014, 5:35 PM
Aug. 8, 2014, 1:54 PM
- The Chinese government is requiring mobile messaging users with public accounts (celebrities, businesses, etc.) to register with their real names. It's also banning the sharing of "unauthorized" political news.
- The curbs are aimed in large part at Tencent's (OTCPK:TCEHY) WeChat, which has grown like wildfire and evolved into a platform for gaming, e-commerce, and much else. WeChat had 396M monthly active users at the end of Q1; Tencent should report a figure well above 400M during its Aug. 13 Q2 report.
- SINA's Weibo (NASDAQ:WB) has long been dealing with government crackdowns. A number of Weibo users have defected to WeChat in past quarters, while citing greater privacy and lighter censorship.
- At the same time, China is flat-out banning two Korean WeChat rivals: KakaoTalk and Naver's (OTC:NHNCF) Line. Line, the top mobile messaging platform in Japan, is set to go public in NYC and Tokyo.
Jun. 19, 2014, 1:38 PM
- Aicai, a Chinese lottery ticket site established in '07, is now fully owned by Sina (SINA -2.4%). Aicai's founding team will remain with the company.
- Aicai was established in '07, with Sina holding a majority stake. The site raised funding in '09.
- Research firm Analysys estimates Aicai had a 4.9% share of the Chinese online lottery market in Q1. 500.com (WBAI +3.2%) had a 5.8% share, Alibaba's Taibao site an 11.3% share.
May. 21, 2014, 5:42 PM
May. 21, 2014, 5:28 PM
- SINA expects Q2 revenue of $177M-$182M, soundly below a $197.7M consensus.
- Weibo (WB), 57%-owned by Sina following its IPO, expects Q2 revenue of $74M-$76M, below a $77.9M consensus. The microblogging leader (revenue +161% Y/Y) accounted for 40% of Sina's Q1 revenue of $167.3M.
- Sina's online ad revenue (inc. Weibo) rose 44% Y/Y in Q1 to $135.7M, while its non-ad revenue rose 17% to $31.6M.
- Gross margin was 60% vs. 64% in Q4 and 51% a year ago, and opex rose 50% Y/Y to $104.4M (exceeding rev. growth of 38%).
- Weibo's ad/marketing revenue rose 161% Y/Y to $51.9M, and its value-added service revenue grew 120% to $15.7M. Display ad growth boosted the former figure, as did promoted Weibo feeds and e-commerce ads stemming from the company's Alibaba partnership.
- Weibo's costs/expenses rose 76% Y/Y to $73.1M. Monthly active users (MAUs) rose by 14.7M Q/Q to 129.1M, and daily active users by 5.2M to 66.6M.
- Sina: Q1 results, PR. Weibo: Q1 results, PR
May. 21, 2014, 5:02 PM
May. 20, 2014, 5:35 PM
May. 2, 2014, 5:14 PM
- SINA expects to report Q1 revenue of $171M and EPS of $0.15, above a consensus of $164.7M and $0.13.
- The company also announces it received two notices from Chinese regulators stating its "License for Online Transmission of Audio-Visual Programs would be revoked due to certain unhealthy and indecent content from third-parties or by users" on Sina.com and its affiliated online literature site.
- Sina says it's still "evaluating the impact" of the decision. The notices arrive a week after media reports stated Sina's licenses are being revoked.
- Subsidiary Weibo (WB) is down 0.9% AH. Sina's Q1 report will arrive "on or around" May 21.
Apr. 24, 2014, 4:50 PM
- Baidu (BIDU) expects Q2 revenue of RMB11.82B-RMB-12.11B ($1.901B-$1.948B), above a consensus of RMB11.55B.
- Revenue growth accelerated to 59.1% in Q1 from 50.4% in Q4. Online ad customers fell 1.1% Q/Q to 446K after falling 2.8% in Q4, but revenue per ad customer remained steady Q/Q and rose 44.1% Y/Y to RMB20.9K ($3,362).
- As promised, Baidu continues to invest aggressively: SG&A spend soared 136.9% Y/Y to $323.2M, thanks in large to mobile promotional efforts. R&D spend rose 57.5% to $205.4M.
- Traffic acquisition costs rose to 12.4% of revenue from 12.3% in Q4 and 10.2% a year ago. Content costs (fueled by online video licensing) rose to 4.1% of revenue from 3.8% in Q4 and 1.6% a year ago.
- Up in sympathy: SINA +1.6%. SOHU +1%. QIHU +2.6%. YY +1.1%. WB +1.5%. YOKU +1.7%.
- Q1 results, PR
Apr. 24, 2014, 11:11 AM
- The Chinese government has revoked Sina's (SINA -5.8%) online publishing and video licenses after finding articles and videos posted on Sina.com that contained "lewd and pornographic content."
- For the time being, Sina.com is fully operational. A government official tells Xinhua it's not certain when the punishment will be implemented, and that Sina should have the chance to appeal. Sina's Weibo unit has already run afoul of regulators plenty of times.
- Sina's shares are off sharply on a down day for Chinese Internet stocks.
Apr. 17, 2014, 4:20 PM
- Though pre-IPO demand was muted (leading to conservative pricing) and initial trading wasn't impressive, Weibo (WB +19.1%) and Leju (LEJU +18.6%) closed up strongly. The former is now worth $4.05B (21x sales), and the latter $1.57B (4.7x sales).
- Sina (SINA +6.7%) managed to follow Weibo higher, but E-House (EJ -5%) couldn't get a similar lift from Leju.
- Chinese Internet companies with upcoming IPOs - the list includes JD.com, Jumei.com (JMEI), and Cheetah Mobile - are likely breathing sighs of relief.
Apr. 17, 2014, 12:07 PM
- Weibo (WB) opened at $16.27, below its $17 IPO price (at the low end of a $17-$19 range) . But shares have very quickly jumped to $18.18, giving them a 6.9% gain.
- The Chinese microblogging leader is worth $3.64B. Parent Sina (SINA +2.4%), which stands to own 58% of Weibo post-IPO after accounting for its downsized offering, has shot higher as well.
- Prospectus, IPO preview
- Update (12:20PM): Weibo is now up 10.1%.
Apr. 17, 2014, 11:53 AM
Apr. 15, 2014, 4:55 PM| 8 Comments
Apr. 11, 2014, 9:26 AM
- SINA's buyback comes with shares having fallen 43% from a 52-week high of $92.83 ahead of Weibo's anticipated IPO, thanks in part to a massive March/April rout in Chinese Internet names.
- The buyback is good for repurchasing 14% of shares at current levels. Sina has $1.87B in cash and short-term investments to finance repurchases, and will soon be receiving additional funds via the sale of 24.2M Weibo shares to Alibaba.
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