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6 Things You Didn’t Know About China’s 3rd Largest Search Engine
Beijing Sogou Technology Development – commonly known as Sogou – may be largely unknown in the rest of the world, but it is China’s third-largest internet search engine after Baidu and Qihoo 360, with 507 million users and another 260 million users on its android or IOS app. In 2016, it teamed up with Microsoft Bing to form an English-language search engine named Sogou English – another sign that Chinese companies are trying to extend their reach abroad.
- Sogou started out as a 12-person department within its parent company Sohu, a media and advertising company. In 2010, Sogou split from Sohu to become an independent enterprise, also receiving a $50 million investment from Alibaba in exchange for 16% of the company.
- In 2005, Sogou developed Chinese input software, making use of technology that categorizes and analyzes key word searches from the internet. By 2008, Sogou’s Chinese input software had garnered a sizable user base, which then allowed Sogou to launch its own web browser and search engine.
- 82% of their 2,400 employees work in R&D, making it the largest R&D department within an internet company in China.
- Wang Xiaochuan (pictured right), the CEO of Sogou and also a current student of CKGSB Business Scholar Program (DBA), thinks A.I. technology will make search engines able to understand and better interact with users in the years to come.
- In 2013, Sogou merged with Tencent’s search engine Soso, receiving an investment of $418 million. Backed by Tencent’s strong data resources, Sogou became the first search engine linked to the popular app Wechat, providing content search abilities for Wechat users.
- In May 2016, Sogou announced it was partnering with Microsoft Bing to form an English-language search function and take on China’s leading search engine giant Baidu.
Wang Xiaochuan is the CEO of Sogou and is also a student of CKGSB Business Scholar Program (DBA). To read more about the CKGSB Business Scholar Program (DBA), please click here.