On the evening of May 21, Reuters reported that Baidu was considering delisting from NASDAQ to boost its valuation. Baidu responded to The Economic Observer later claiming this was a false rumor.
“We are really concerned that the US government is tightening its control over Chinese companies,” Li Yanhong, Chairman of Baidu Inc. and a member of the national Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), said on Tuesday morning. “We are constantly discussing internally what we can do, including secondary listings in places like Hong Kong.”
“If a company is performing good, there will be a lot of listing options, not just in the US,” Li said. So we are less concerned that the U.S. government crackdown will have an irreversible impact on the company’s business.“
As of press time, Baidu has a market capitalization of $37.4 billion, ranking 8th among Chinese Internet companies after Alibaba, Tencent, Meituan Dianping, JD.com, Pinduoduo, NetEase and Xiaomi.
On the morning of May 19, Baidu issued a quarterly earnings report. Compared with the same period last year, the revenue in the first quarter was 22.5 billion yuan, down 7% year on year, while the net profit was 3.1 billion yuan, up 219% year on year. Baidu shares jumped 7.74% after the results were released.
In addition to Baidu, JD.com and NetEase have also been reported to be planning to delist from NASDAQ and go public in Hong Kong. All companies declined to comment.