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IDG eyes big data, mobile internet

By Yang Cheng | China Daily | Updated: 2017-03-30 07:17

International Data Group-the US-based owner of PC World magazine as well as market researcher IDC-said on Wednesday that it will expand its business portfolio and its foray into big data and the mobile internet sectors, after it was acquired by a consortium made up of China Oceanwide Holdings Group Co and China-based IDG Capital.

The consortium completed the acquisition of the Boston-based group this month, but declined to reveal the transaction value. Insiders indicated the amount was between $500 million and $1 billion.

"The move is expected to cement IDG's position as a leader in the media sector," said Liu Bing, new president of IDG and vice-president of China Oceanwide.

He said he expected that IDG's cutting-edge financial services could ride the tide of the Chinese government's strategy to boost the big data sector and mobile internet.

Kirk Campbell, president and CEO of IDG data services unit IDC, said IDC would benefit from Oceanwide's financial support to boost its research on state-of-the-art robotics, the internet of things and next-generation security.

He said he was targeting sales growth of up to 10 percent this year for IDC.

Michael Friedeuberg, CEO of IDG Communications, said he expects substantial growth in revenue and said its operations in social media, digital and mobile media would benefit from a strong capital injection from Oceanwide.

IDG holds up to 600 exhibitions a year around the world. Oceanwide, which started as a property developer, said it will provide venues for IDG's exhibition services and help move more of them to China.

To help cope with the challenges facing future growth, Liu Bing said Oceanwide would give IDG's management full autonomy and would not alter its current business structure.

Xu Liang, a partner at M&A specialist law firm Hogan Lovells, said currently many Chinese companies like Oceanwide had sufficient capital and were keenly interested in acquisitions abroad.

He said that while they could give the management of the acquired companies full autonomy, they should be prepared to implement restructuring where necessary and take over full control in the future.

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