Alibaba takes a step back from entertainment business with closure of Xiami music app

Photo by Fausto García on Unsplash

Alibaba Group will close its music streaming platform Xiami Music next month, in a move that marks a step back from its ambitions to push into China’s entertainment industry.

“Due to operational adjustments, we will stop the service of Xiami Music,” the online music arm of the Chinese e-commerce giant said on Tuesday on its Weibo account, adding that the closure will occur on Feb. 5. “It’s hard to say goodbye after being with you for 12 years.”

Alibaba acquired the music service in 2013, and invested millions of yuan to compete in China’s online music market, which is dominated by Tencent Holdings. Its efforts however have not paid off and the app currently only has 2% of China’s music streaming market, behind KuGou Music, QQ Music, KuWo, and NetEase Cloud Music, according to Beijing-headquartered data intelligence company TalkingData.

Xiami‘s closure also comes after Chinese regulators announced that they had launched an antitrust investigation into Alibaba, which beyond its core e-commerce business also operates in sectors such as financial services, cloud computing and artificial intelligence.

However, it does not mark the end to Alibaba’s participation in the online streaming market. In September 2019, Alibaba invested $700 million in one of Xiami‘s competitors, NetEase Cloud Music.

Reuters

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Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.