Remember the days when the phrase “Made in China” was synonymous with cheap and cheerful?
Not anymore. The Friday flotation of Chinese search engine Baidu has brought back the dot com boom days to the Nasdaq. The stock more than quadrupled by the end of play Friday, instantly creating the most valuable Internet company in China. The shares were priced at $27 but opened at $66 and then soared to $122.54.
And lets be honest, who had heard of Baidu until now?
The role call of mintedness:
Chief executive, 36-year-old Robin Li, now worth close to $1 billion, easily making him one of China’s richest entrepreneurs.
IDG, one of Baidu’s earliest investors, watched the stake it acquired for $1 million a few years ago jump to more than $150 million.
The 28 percent stake that Draper Fisher Jurvetson acquired over the last few years for about $12 million is now valued at close to $1 billion.
And why does this feel like 1999 all over again?
Because Baidu is a four-year-old company that had just $13 million in revenue last year and about $1.4 million in profit. The company is now valued at close to $4 billion. For “Internet”, substitute the world China – and no doubt any Chinese tech related venture over the next 6 – 12 months will get the same treatment….