Is Baidu’s withdrawal from a $3 billion live streaming deal a sign the industry is done?

  • Baidu scraps $3.6 bln deal for JOYY’s China live-streaming unit.
  • This seems to be Baidu’s realization that the livestreaming industry may already be in decline.

Baidu pulls out from the deal after three years. Is it due to antitrust crackdown, or did Baidu get cold feet?

On January 1, 2024, Moon SPV Limited, an affiliate of Baidu, through the exercise of contractual rights, Termination of the Share Purchase Agreement entered into by Moon SPV Limited, Baidu (Hong Kong) Limited, JOYY Inc. (” JOYY “) and other related parties on November 16, 2020, as subsequently amended or supplemented. The reason for the termination of the agreement is mentioned in the announcement: the preconditions for delivery stipulated in the share purchase Agreement have not been fully satisfied. Baidu had hoped that through the acquisition of YY, let live streaming this entrance become their new monetization channel. But in the past three years, not only do Internet giants want to reduce costs and increase efficiency, but the number of live broadcast users has also surged.

With the original $1.9 billion acquisition of 91 assistant in the front, after the AI big model, Baidu has always “come late but not bad money” to stop the acquisition of YY, it looks more like a “timely stop loss”.

Also read: Baidu scraps $3.6 bln deal for JOYY’s China live-streaming unit

Original expectation

In November 2020, Baidu announced it would acquire joy Inc’s video entertainment live streaming business in China for $3.6 billion in cash, a move that would mark the search engine giant’s latest move into the fast-growing online video and live streaming space and diversify its revenue streams beyond its core search business. Robin Li, Baidu’s co-founder and chief executive, had said: “This deal will make Baidu a leading live-streaming platform and diversify our revenue streams.”The original Share purchase Agreement includes that Baidu (Hong Kong) Limited agrees to purchase from JOYY and JOYY agrees to sell JOYY’s domestic live video entertainment business in China to Baidu (Hong Kong) Limited. The Share Purchase Agreement provides that the closing of the proposed acquisition is subject to certain preconditions, including obtaining necessary governmental regulatory approvals and other conditions, and that either the buyer or the Seller has the right to terminate the Share Purchase Agreement if the proposed acquisition is not closed by the final deadline. As of December 31, 2023, the final closing date, the preconditions to closing set forth in the Share Purchase Agreement have not been fully satisfied. The company will seek to discuss with JOYY next steps following the termination of the share purchase agreement.

Joyy’s world

Founded in 2005, Joyy enables users to interact with each other in real time through online live media and offers users a uniquely engaging and immersive entertainment experience.

The Nasdaq-listed company owns live streaming social media platform YY Live, Bigo Live and short video platform Likee.  It has amassed more than 4 million paying users who purchase virtual gifts to tip their favorite performers.


Fei Wang

Fei Wang, a reporter at BTW media dedicated in Internet Governance and IT infrastructure. She is studying bilingual broadcasting and hosting at Communication University of Zhejiang. Send tips to

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