Qi Lu is stepping down as Baidu's chief operating officer, the search engine giant announced Friday. In a statement, Lu said he was unable to continue working in China full time because of "personal and family reasons." "I am highly optimistic on Baidu's future and will continue to support Baidu, while spending more time with my family in the US," he continued. "For my next steps, I plan to work in research and investment areas, to help advance our shared mission to make a complex world simpler through technology." Lu transitioned into the COO slot last January after joining Baidu from Microsoft, where he served as applications and services group VP.
Zhang Yaqin, president of Baidu Inc, speaks at the global business forum during Baidu Technology Innovation Conference 2016, on Sept 2. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn] Chinese internet giant Baidu Inc seems to be dazzling the world nonstop. Robin Li, its chairman and chief executive, announced "Baidu Brain" on Thursday, the core of the tech company's plans on artificial intelligence, which consists of three parts - artificial intelligence algorithms, computing power and big data. The next day, at the global business forum also during Baidu Technology Innovation Conference 2016, Baidu's President Zhang Yaqin said the company's revenue coming from its global business has more than quintupled by September from a year earlier. Baidu's globalization, along with "Baidu Brain", is the next big vision for the company, said Zhang.
BEIJING, Nov. 16, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Baidu, Inc. (NASDAQ:BIDU) held its annual conference "Baidu World" in Beijing today with the theme "Bring AI to Life", highlighting Baidu's efforts to bring artificial intelligence (AI) to everyday life and expand products and services empowered with intelligent technology to better understand and serve users.
In a surprise move which shook Baidu's stock, Andrew Ng, Baidu's Chief Scientist and partner with Baidu's founder Robin Li Yanhong in expanding Baidu's AI activities into machine learning, driverless vehicles, and to power AI usage in advertising, maps, takeout delivery, and voice-activated search, resigned. Baidu's AI group has expanded to over 1,300 people in China and Silicon Valley. Ng, who has been with Baidu since 2014 oversaw most of that change. Some see Ng's departure as a setback to their AI efforts, hence the shakeup in the stock price. Others comment that the timing was right both for him and for Baidu.
REVENUE FORECAST: Baidu's quarterly revenue is likely to have reached $3.9 billion, up from $3.1 billion a year ago, the survey showed. AD GROWTH: Baidu has seen its search-related advertising bounce back, boosting both its revenue and profit in recent quarters. Baidu should continue to benefit as companies--especially in areas such as health and online education--allocate more of their ad budgets to search advertising, which has a higher conversion rate than newsfeeds, Shawn Yang, executive director at Blue Lotus Capital Advisors, wrote in a research report. "We see an increasing demand of search ads from both users and advertisers," he wrote. "Chinese internet users become more mature in gaining information and tend to use search engines more frequently."