Baidu Seeks To Launch Biotech Firm

Baidu CEO Robin Li.

Chinese tech giant Baidu is looking to launch a biotech firm and is in talks to raise up to $2 billion over the span of three years to finance it, according to a report from ReutersReuters reports Baidu is looking to launch a biotech standalone entity rather than an affiliated subsidiary and that the company will work on using artificial intelligence and computing to develop drugs and diagnose diseases such as cancer. A sizeable number of companies are already in that market in the US, but not so much in China. Baidu is apparently looking to fill that niche with a company that'll presumably be focused on the Chinese market. China already has a big health-tech market that Baidu will likely fare well in navigating.

Baidu, primarily a search company and the Chinese equivalent of Google, has been looking to expand into new ventures in the face of increasing competition in its core business. The company currently has a big presence in the Chinese autonomous driving market. Also, it holds a majority stake in iQiyi, a US-listed Chinese video streaming service that the company itself founded in 2010.

According to Reuters, Baidu's founder and long-time CEO, Robin Li, is personally involved in the new biotech project. A name for the venture doesn't seem to have yet been selected.

Photo credit: Stefen Chow/Fortune Global Forum, under Creative Commons license

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