Baidu Music announced a merger on Thursday with China’s biggest music company Taihe Music. The brand and service provided by Baidu Music will persist after the merger.
Baidu’s new partner, Taihe Music Group, was established in June after the consolidation of two record brands and a music publishing company. The new group has over 100 singers and 120 composers. It also manages the copyright for over 600,000 songs.
Following the Chinese government’s enactment of strict regulations on copyrights earlier this year, music streaming service providers in China have sought collaborations to shoulder the enormous burden of obtaining legal rights to music properties. Collaborating with Taihe Music will release Baidu from the cash-burning competition for copyright purchases.
The merger between Baidu Music and Taihe Music is part of Baidu’s “aircraft carrier project”, a project designed to enable Baidu to attract external investment. The project was launched in August this year and covers about a dozen Baidu products, including its food delivery business and its mobile UI assistant 91 Panda Desktop.
“As long as it’s beneficial for business development, Baidu doesn’t have to hold a controlling share in the new subsidiaries,” He Wenhai, a Baidu Senior Strategic Consultant and the person in charge of this project told Economic Information Daily in August.
As Baidu switched its focus from an online-to-offline business in the second quarter of this year, it has begun to cut down on expenses by drawing in external investment. According to the Chinese financial website Jiemian, Baidu’s online reading branch Baidu Literature, social network service Baidu Tieba and video streaming business are also seeking external investment.