20-F
BAIDU, INC. filed this Form 20-F on 03/31/2017
Entire Document
 


Table of Contents

We face significant competition and may suffer from loss of users and customers as a result.

We face significant competition in almost every aspect of our business, including competition from other companies that seek to provide internet search services to users and provide online marketing services to customers, as well as other companies that provide transaction or internet video services. In the Chinese internet market, our main competitors include China-based internet companies, such as Tencent, Alibaba, Sohu, Qihoo 360 and ByteDance. We compete with these entities for both users and customers on the basis of user traffic, quality (relevance), user experience of the search results, availability and ease of use of products and services, the number of customers, distribution channels and the number of associated third-party websites/wapsites. For transaction services, our primary competitors include China-based internet companies such as Meituan-Dianping, Elema, Koubei, AutoNavi, Alipay and Weixin Pay. For iQiyi, our primary competitors include companies that operate online video websites in China, such as Youku-Tudou and Tencent Video. Some of our competitors have significant financial resources, long operating histories and are experienced in attracting and retaining their users, accommodating their users’ habits and preferences and managing customers. They may use their experience and resources to compete with us in a variety of ways, including competing for users and their time, customers, distributors, content, strategic partners and networks of third-party websites/wapsites, investing more heavily in research and development and making investments and acquisitions. If any of our competitors provides comparable or better Chinese language search experience, transaction services or internet video services, our user traffic could decline significantly. Additionally, if the channels that we use to distribute services or products to our users and customers are no longer available to us, we may experience a decline in user traffic. Any such decline in traffic could weaken our brand and result in loss of users and customers, which could have a material and adverse effect on our results of operations.

We also face competition from other types of advertising media, such as newspapers, magazines, yellow pages, billboards, other forms of outdoor media, television, radio and mobile applications. Large companies in China generally allocate, and may continue to allocate, a limited portion of their budgets to online marketing, as opposed to traditional advertising and other forms of advertising media. If these companies do not devote a larger portion of their marketing budgets to online marketing services provided by us, or if our existing customers reduce the amount they spend on online marketing, our results of operations and growth prospects could be adversely affected.

If our expansions into new businesses are not successful, our future results of operations and growth prospects may be materially and adversely affected.

As part of our growth strategy, we enter into new businesses from time to time by leveraging our large internet user base to generate additional revenue streams and through our development of new business lines or strategic investments in or acquisitions of other businesses. Expansions into new businesses may present operating, marketing and compliance challenges that differ from those that we currently encounter. If we cannot address new challenges and provide exceptional quality services, we may not be able to compete effectively. As a result, we may not be able to recover costs incurred for investing in, developing and marketing new businesses, and may not achieve profitability from these businesses. In that case, our future results of operations and growth prospects may be materially and adversely affected. In addition, we may encounter regulatory uncertainties related to new business we enter into.

If we fail to continue to innovate and provide products, services and high-quality internet experience that attract and retain users, we may not be able to generate sufficient user traffic to remain competitive.

Our success depends on providing products and services to attract users and enable users to have a high-quality internet experience. In order to attract and retain users and compete against our competitors, we must continue to invest significant resources in research and development to enhance our internet search technology, artificial intelligence (AI) and autonomous driving technology improve our existing products and services and introduce additional high-quality products and services. If we are unable to anticipate user preferences or industry changes, or if we are unable to enhance the quality of our products and services on a timely basis or fail

 

7