Australian job portal Seek in talks over new investors for Chinese unit

Photographer: SeongJoon Cho/Bloomberg

Online jobs portal Seek is in talks with a number of parties on whether to bring new investors into its Chinese unit, it said on Wednesday, after a report indicated that Alibaba was eyeing an investment.

Melbourne-based Seek said the discussions aimed “to assess whether the introduction of new investors could better support Zhaopin‘s long term growth aspirations.”

Seek did not name the parties it was talking to, but late on Tuesday, The Information website said e-commerce giant Alibaba was looking to invest “hundreds of millions of dollars” in Zhaopin, driving up the Australian firm’s shares by 13%.

Alibaba did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The discussions, just three years after Seek led a consortium to take the then New York-listed Zhaopin private, come as the firm’s underlying annual profit halved after the coronavirus pandemic put a freeze on corporate hiring plans.

However Zhaopin had “recovered well” in the June quarter as China remerged from lockdowns earlier than other nations, the company said, adding that its performance “bodes well for a robust recovery” when normal conditions return.

“Our long-term focus remains on supporting Zhaopin to grow its market share in a large but competitive human capital market,” it said in August.

Reuters

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.

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.