Tencent pays $448 million for Sogou stake

China’s online battle heats up as the country's biggest internet group, which on Monday saw its market capitalisation surpass US$100bn for the first time, says it will merge its Soso search business with its rival.
Tencent’s other products include popular messaging services QQ, Weixin and WeChat; Qzone for social networking; the QQ game platform for online games; and an ecommerce platform.
Tencent’s other products include popular messaging services QQ, Weixin and WeChat; Qzone for social networking; the QQ game platform for online games; and an ecommerce platform.

Tencent, the Chinese internet group, has taken a 36.5 per cent stake in domestic rival Sogou, further expanding its reach at a transformative time for the country’s internet industry.

China’s biggest internet group, which on Monday saw its market capitalisation surpass US$100bn for the first time, paid US$448 million for the stake and merged its Soso search business with its new partner.

Tencent’s stake could increase to 40 per cent although Sogou’s parent - Nasdaq-listed Sohu - will remain the controlling shareholder and Sogou will continue to be an independent subsidiary.

As part of the deal, Tencent and Sogou agreed to jointly...

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