September 2, 2012
A battle is raging in the Chinese Internet space. Qihoo has challenged Baidu's search dominance, leading short sellers who have been questioning the veracity of the company's financials and self-reported business metrics to once again question the company. Against this backdrop, Citron Research issued a report indicating a sum-of-the-parts analysis on Sohu shows the company could be worth $86.
In turn, that analysis has led many in China to question Citron's research and motivations. Kai-Fu Lee, former president of Google China, published a blog post challenging many of Citron's claims of Sohu's value. So, what company should investors put their dollars behind?
As Senior Technology Analyst Eric Bleeker puts it, he'd avoid Sohu in favor of other Chinese names. The reason, he says, is simple: Sohu is good in a lot of fields, but great, and a leader, nowhere. In video, it's still far behind Youku; in video games, NetEase remains a leader; its search engine runs far behind Baidu; and its display-advertising unit has been deteriorating. Eric says he'd rather cast his lot with companies that are great and can continue growing for years to come, rather than a company fighting from behind in many areas. To see his full thoughts, watch the following video.
While Eric might be willing to pass on Sohu, there's no questioning the greatness of Baidu in search. Our brand-new premium report breaks down the dominant Chinese search provider's strengths and weaknesses and also comes with continuing guidance and updates as news strikes the company. If you're thinking about getting in on the massive growth in the Chinese Internet space, click here to access the report and get the full write-up from one of the Fool's top analysts.