21st Century Business Herald, 4/16/14
Chinese internet company Baidu (Nasdaq: BIDU) has announced the launch of a new "Baidu Wallet" ("Baidu Qianbao") payment brand, replacing the company's former "Baifubao" brand. Baidu Wallet is not available as an independent mobile payment app, but rather will be embedded into a wide variety of mobile apps and mobile games. Baidu Wallet can provide online payment, money transfer, utility payment, mobile top up, and investment services.
Baidu Wallet will first appear in Baidu's own Baidu Search, Baidu Maps, and Baidu Group Buy mobile apps. A new version of Baidu Search that includes the Baidu Wallet payment module will be released at the end of this month, allowing users to pay for products and services found in search results using Baidu Wallet. Baidu currently has 14 mobile apps with a user base of 100 mln or larger.
A number of companies providing e-commerce, group buy, online dating, and financial services are slated to embed Baidu Wallet into their mobile apps in the near future. In order to attract merchants, Baidu has promised that no commissions will be collected on payments made using the PC version of Baidu Wallet, while merchants will be charged a commission rate 12% lower than the current industry standard for mobile transactions.
Editor's Note: The current industry standard for mobile transactions is 0.6%, so based on Baidu's statement, it appears Baidu will charge a commission on mobile transactions of approximately 0.53%. For more background on this topic, please see "Baidu Launches Mobile Wallet SDK" MD 9/16/13 issue.