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Company report, featuring a PESTLE, Porters Five Forces, 5C, MOST, CATWOE and SWOT analysis


This report on Baidu is part of our comprehensive analysis of the world’s 10,000 largest companies. It is continually updated to ensure that it always contains the latest information available.

For Premium members only, full access to this study on Baidu is available, including the SWOT analysis, PESTLE, 5C analysis, CATWOE, Porters Five Forces, MOST analysis and a myriad of additional high value sections.

In addition to the sections that require analysis, we also identify possibilities for new products and services, anticipate future market trends, and evaluate the potential benefits of alliances between Baidu and other organisations.

Company Description

Baidu is a Chinese multinational technology company headquartered in Beijing, China. Founded in 2000, Baidu primarily specializes in Internet-related products and services, including search engine services, artificial intelligence, and cloud computing. Baidu's main products and services include Baidu App, Baidu Maps, Baidu Browser, Baidu Tieba, Baidu Baike, Baidu Wangpan, and Baidu Video. Baidu serves markets across China, as well as other markets in Asia, Europe, and the Americas.

Industry Overview

The primary industry that Baidu operates in is the global search engine industry, which has a total market size of over $54 billion USD. This industry employs over 800,000 people worldwide, with most of the employees based in the United States, China, and India. Baidu itself is the largest search engine in China, with over 80% market share in the Chinese search engine market. Baidu also has a presence in other countries, including Japan, Thailand, and Brazil.

Industry Classification

In terms of formal classification, Platform Executive has tagged Baidu as a business operating within the Dotcom industry.

Table of Contents

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Intellectual Property

Some of the Patents granted to, or relevant to the organisation include the following:

Patent Title: Method and apparatus for automatic voice recognition
Patent ID: US10481512
Date: June 11, 2019

Patent Title: Method for processing a voice query
Patent ID: US10481476
Date: June 11, 2019

Patent Title: Speech recognition and natural language processing system
Patent ID: US10480853
Date: June 11, 2019

Patent Title: Voice recognition method, voice recognition device and voice recognition system
Patent ID: US10477483
Date: June 4, 2019

Patent Title: Method and apparatus for automatic voice recognition
Patent ID: US10477466
Date: June 4, 2019

Patent Title: Voice recognition method, voice recognition device and voice recognition system
Patent ID: US10477465
Date: June 4, 2019

Patent Title: Method for processing a voice query
Patent ID: US10477462
Date: June 4, 2019

Patent Title: Voice recognition system and voice recognition method
Patent ID: US10477460
Date: June 4, 2019

Patent Title: Automatic voice recognition method, device and system
Patent ID: US10454584
Date: May 14, 2019

Patent Title: Automatic language recognition method and device
Patent ID: US10454583
Date: May 14, 2019

Patent Title: Speech recognition and natural language processing system
Patent ID: US10454580

Major Products & Services

The main products and/or services commercialised by this business include the following:

  • Baidu Search: Baidu's flagship search engine.
  • Baidu Maps: A web-based map service similar to Google Maps.
  • Baidu Input: An input method editor (IME) application.
  • Baidu App: A mobile app store to discover, download and manage mobile apps.
  • Baidu Wangpan: A cloud storage service.
  • Baidu Cloud: A cloud computing service offering computing, storage, and networking services.
  • Baidu Tieba: A social forum for users to discuss a variety of topics.
  • Baidu News: A news aggregation and analysis service.
  • Baidu Baike: An online encyclopedia similar to Wikipedia.
  • Baidu Knows: A Q&A platform for users to ask and answer questions.

Key Competitors

We have identified the following organisations as being key competitors:

  • Alibaba
  • Tencent
  • ByteDance
  • Sogou
  • Qihoo 360
  • NetEase
  • Sohu
  • Ctrip
  • Xiaomi
  • Meituan Dianping
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Key Stakeholders

Stakeholders are individuals or groups who have an interest in a business and/or are affected by its actions.

These stakeholders can have different requirements and expectations from the business, which must be taken into account when making decisions.

By understanding their stakeholders’ requirements, a business can make informed decisions that benefit all involved.

Below is the list of internal and external stakeholders we have identified for this business:

1. Customers: Baidu's customers include individuals who use their products and services for personal use, as well as businesses that partner with Baidu for their online marketing and advertising needs.

2. Employees: Baidu's employees are key stakeholders, as they are responsible for the development and delivery of products and services.

3. Shareholders: Shareholders are key stakeholders for Baidu, as they are the owners of the company and have a vested interest in its success.

4. Partners: Baidu's partners are key stakeholders, as they collaborate with Baidu to deliver their products and services to customers.

5. Regulators: Regulators play a key role in shaping the environment in which Baidu must operate. They are important stakeholders in that they have the power to create or modify rules, regulations, and laws that may affect Baidu’s business.

Value Proposition

A value proposition explains the unique value and/or benefits that an organisation provides to its customers, partners, stakeholders and the overall market. It outlines what makes a company like Baidu different from its competitors, along with what it can offer that key competitors cannot.

A corporate value proposition can be used with the competitive advantages section of this report in order to better understand Baidu and its position within the marketplace.

Baidu is a China-based search engine company. It offers a variety of services such as search, map, and video.

Competitive Advantages

Competitive advantages are unique attributes, strategies, resources, or capabilities that allow an organisation to outperform its competitors and achieve superior market position and profitability.

Competitive advantages for the business include the following:

Technology: Baidu has invested heavily in artificial intelligence and other cutting-edge technologies. This gives them a competitive advantage over other search engines in terms of accuracy and speed.

Market Share: Baidu is the dominant search engine in China, giving it a strong base of users and generating massive amounts of traffic.

Brand Recognition: Baidu is a well-known brand in China, giving it an edge over other search engines in terms of brand recognition.

Advertising Platform: Baidu has a powerful advertising platform that generates substantial revenue from its users.

Localization: Baidu has invested heavily in localization and providing tailored search results for Chinese users.

Customers & Cohorts

As part of this competitive intelligence study, we have identified the main customers of the organisation.

These include the following cohorts:

  • Individuals
  • Businesses
  • Enterprises
  • Government Agencies
  • Educational Institutions
  • Non-profit Organisations
  • Media Agencies
  • Online Retailers

Market Trends

Market trends can impact an organisation by influencing consumer behavior, altering supply and demand dynamics, and affecting the organisation's ability to remain competitive in the market.

As part of this study, we have identified a number of potential short-term to medium-term trends that could impact the organisation. These include the following:

Key Market Trends
Increased Adoption of Artificial Intelligence (AI): AI is becoming increasingly popular in the digital marketing space, and this could have a major impact on Baidu. AI-driven marketing solutions are becoming more efficient and cost-effective, allowing Baidu to create more targeted campaigns that can reach larger audiences. As AI becomes more pervasive, Baidu will be able to gain a competitive edge in the market as well as increase its market share.

Growing Emphasis on Mobile: With the growth of mobile-friendly content, Baidu needs to ensure that it is catering to this market. Baidu must create mobile-friendly campaigns and content that are optimized for mobile devices in order to stay competitive.

Rise of Social Media: The rise of social media has changed the way that companies market their products and services. Baidu must find ways to leverage social media in order to reach new customers and engage existing customers.

Increased Use of Big Data: Big data is becoming more important in the digital marketing space. Baidu must find ways to use big data to better understand its customers and create more targeted campaigns that can lead to more conversions.

Key Performance Indicators

Key Performance Indicators

Below is a list of KPI's that we have identified as being strategically relevant to this organisation:

Financials (BETA)

The key financials for Baidu include income statements, which can be found in their annual reports. These financial statements provide information on the organisation's financial performance and health, including revenue, expenses, and profits. This information, along with other indicators are used by investors, analysts and other stakeholders to evaluate the company's performance and future prospects.

Where a financial does not match, we have included those of the parent company (if a listed entity). If the financials are missing please contact us and we will prioritise the update.

Key Financials

Key Personnel

Income Statement

[eod_financials target="BIDU.US" id="10329343" preset="Income Statement" years="2018-2023"]


Top-level corporate stats and financial highlights for the listed entity, include:

Share Performance

Below is the current (EOD) share performance for the company, or its listed parent:

Potential Products/Services

As part of this study we have attempted to prognosticate potential products and/or services this organisation could develop in the short to medium-term.

AI-driven Customer Service Solutions: Baidu could develop an AI-driven customer service solution to provide personalised, automated customer service to its users. This could include voice recognition, natural language processing, and machine learning technologies to provide human-like assistance.

Video and Image Recognition Platform: Baidu could create a platform that can recognise and analyse images and videos, as well as offer advanced visual search capabilities. This could be used for a variety of applications, such as facial recognition, object identification, and other image manipulation tasks.

Automated Language Translation Services: Baidu could develop an automated language translation service to help users communicate and access content in other languages. This could be used for both text and spoken conversations, allowing users to quickly and easily access content in any language.

Smart Home Automation Solutions: Baidu could create a range of smart home automation solutions to help users automate tasks and control their homes more easily. This could include voice-controlled devices, remote sensors, and other technologies to make home life easier.

Augmented Reality Platform: Baidu could develop an augmented reality platform to create immersive experiences for its users. This could be used for applications such as virtual reality gaming, training, and education, as well as a range of other uses.

Potential Synergies

Using our product and portfolio-matching algorithm, we have determined that the following organisations have potential synergies with the company:

1. Huawei Technologies: Huawei is a leading telecommunications and technology company that has collaborated with Baidu on numerous projects, including developing AI-powered devices and cloud services.
2. Tencent: Tencent is a Chinese internet giant that provides social media, mobile and gaming services. The two companies have signed a strategic cooperation agreement to collaborate on AI technology and share resources.
3. Microsoft: Microsoft is a technology leader that has partnered with Baidu on a range of projects, including developing artificial intelligence and deep learning solutions.
4. Intel: Intel is a chip maker that has collaborated with Baidu on AI-powered products, such as its deep learning platform, PaddlePaddle.
5. Alibaba: Alibaba is an e-commerce giant that has worked with Baidu on a number of projects, such as a joint venture to develop smart car technology.

Porter's Five Forces

Created by Harvard Business School Professor Michael Porter in 1979, Porter's Five Forces model is designed to help analyse the particular attractiveness of an industry; evaluate investment options; and better assess the competitive environment.

The five forces are as follows:

  • Competitive rivalry
  • Supplier power
  • Buyer power
  • Threat of substitution
  • Threat of new entries
The five forces are:

1. Threat of new entrants: This is the force that determines how easy it is for new companies to enter the market and compete against existing firms. A HIGH threat of new entrants means that it is easy for new companies to enter the market and compete against existing firms. This force is HIGH in the case of Baidu because the market for online search is not very saturated and there is still room for new entrants.

2. Threat of substitute products or services: This is the force that determines how easy it is for customers to switch to alternative products or services. A HIGH threat of substitute products or services means that customers have many alternative options to choose from. This force is LOW in the case of Baidu because there are not many substitutes for online search engines.

3. Bargaining power of buyers: This is the force that determines how much power buyers have to negotiate prices with sellers. A HIGH bargaining power of buyers means that buyers can negotiate lower prices from sellers. This force is HIGH in the case of Baidu because there are many alternative online search engines available for users to choose from.

4. Bargaining power of suppliers: This is the force that determines how much power suppliers have to negotiate prices with buyers. A HIGH bargaining power of suppliers means that suppliers can negotiate higher prices from buyers. This force is LOW in the case of Baidu because there are many alternative online search engines available for users to choose from.

5. Competitive rivalry: This is the force that determines how intense the competition is between existing firms in the market. A HIGH level of competitive rivalry means that firms are competing fiercely for market share. This force is HIGH in the case of Baidu because there are many alternative online search engines available for users to choose from.

PESTLE Analysis

This PESTLE analysis is a strategic planning tool that assesses key external factors affecting the organisation, including the following:

  • Political
  • Economic
  • Social
  • Technological
  • Legal
  • Environmental

Each of these factors is analysed to determine their impact on the organisations strategy, objectives, and operations.

By utilising a PESTLE analysis, the organisation can make better decisions and develop strategies to address potential risks and opportunities.

PESTLE Analysis

CATWOE Analysis


The CATWOE analysis is used to investigate each stakeholders perspectives in order to enable the business to make informed decisions.

The CATWOE analysis is a problem-solving tool consisting of six elements:

  • Customers
  • Actors
  • Transformation process
  • World view
  • Owners
  • Environmental constraints

We view the CATWOE as being most useful when used in conjunction with other problem-solving tools such as a SWOT analysis.

Customers: Baidu's customers are primarily individuals who use their online search engine and other online services. They come from all over the world and include both casual users and businesses that use Baidu for marketing and research purposes.

Actors: Baidu's actors are composed of its employees, shareholders, and investors. Employees are responsible for day-to-day operations and developing new services and products. Shareholders and investors provide the financial resources needed for Baidu to operate.

Transformation process: Baidu's transformation process is centered on its search engine and other online services. These services are used by customers to find the information they need and businesses to market their products and services. Baidu also provides customers with a range of other services, such as maps, news, music, and video.

World view: Baidu's world view is that it will provide its customers with the best online search experience. It also promotes innovation by constantly developing new services and products to meet the ever-changing needs of its customers.

Owners: Baidu is owned by a group of investors, including the Chinese internet giant Tencent. These investors are able to provide the financial resources needed to keep the company running and allow it to develop new services and products.

Environmental constraints: Baidu must abide by the laws and regulations of the countries in which it operates. It must also compete with other search engines and online services for customers. Additionally, it must also take into account the changing needs of its customers in order to remain competitive.

SWOT Analysis

This SWOT analysis is a strategic planning tool used to assess the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of the Baidu business.

When creating this SWOT the team at Platform Executive have taken into consideration the corporate strategy; brand; key financials; the competitive landscape; along with the products and/or services offered.

To offer increased context for future innovation and product development we also consider the historical context for the business and industry; and perceived direction of travel.

Upon researching the company, we have uncovered a number of strategic and operational strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

SWOT Analysis


Below is a list of the strengths we have identified for the business:

1. Baidu has a strong focus on technology, which has allowed the company to develop a number of innovative products and services.

2. Baidu has a large user base in China, which gives the company a significant competitive advantage.

3. Baidu has a strong financial position, with a large cash reserve and a low debt-to-equity ratio.

4. Baidu has a strong management team, with a proven track record of execution.


Below is a list of opportunities we have identified for the business:

1. Increasing market share in the mobile search space: Baidu should focus on improving its mobile search capabilities, creating a better user experience, and increasing its market share to capitalise on the growing trend of mobile search.

2. Leveraging AI and machine learning technology: Baidu should invest in AI and machine learning technology, such as its PaddlePaddle platform, to optimize its search engine and offer more personalised search results.

3. Developing new content and products: Baidu should create more content and products such as videos, music, and other services, in order to diversify its revenue sources and increase its user base.

4. Investing in international expansion: Baidu should invest in expanding its presence in international markets, such as India and Southeast Asia, by setting up localized versions of its services and partnering with local companies.


Below is a list of the weaknesses we have identified for the business:

1. Lack of internationalization: Baidu has yet to make significant inroads outside of China.

2. Over-reliance on advertising: Baidu’s business model is heavily reliant on advertising revenues, which leaves it vulnerable to fluctuations in the market.

3. Lack of mobile presence: Baidu has been slow to develop a strong mobile presence, which is increasingly important in China.

4. Weaknesses in search: Baidu’s search engine has been criticised for being inaccurate and biased towards certain results.


Below is a list of the threats we have identified for the business:

1. Strategic Threat: Increasing Competition in the Chinese Search Engine Market: Baidu faces increasing competition from a number of other Chinese search engine players such as Tencent and Sogou, who are making inroads into the market share of Baidu.

2. Operational Threat: Rising Cost of User Acquisition and Retention: Baidu faces rising costs associated with user acquisition and retention as competition in the market intensifies. This puts pressure on Baidu’s profit margins and could eventually lead to a decline in its market share.

3. Strategic Threat: Shifting User Preferences: Baidu is facing the challenge of shifting user preferences, as users increasingly move towards mobile devices and demand more personalised search results. This could lead to a decline in the market share of Baidu.

4. Operational Threat: Difficulty in Adapting to Changes in Technology: Baidu is facing the challenge of adapting to changes in technology, as new technologies are introduced into the market. This could lead to a decline in the efficiency of the search engine, which could in turn affect its market share.

5C Analysis

The 5C Analysis is a marketing framework that can be used to provide insight into the key drivers of success, as well as the risk exposure to various environmental factors.
This (concise) 5C analysis examines the external and internal environment for Baidu. It includes analysing the company's customers, competitors, collaborators, context, and capabilities. We have produced this short analysis to identify potential opportunities and threats to Baidu, as well as areas where the company needs to improve its operations or strategy.
Company: Baidu

Collaborators: Baidu has collaborated with many companies, including Microsoft, Qualcomm, and Intel. Baidu has also partnered with numerous Chinese companies such as Huawei, Tencent, and Alibaba.

Customers: Baidu’s customers are primarily individuals who use the company’s search engine, mobile apps, and other services. Baidu also provides services to other businesses, such as cloud hosting and AI technology.

Competitors: Baidu’s main competitors include Google and other major search engine companies. Other competitors include Chinese tech companies such as Alibaba, Tencent, and Huawei.

Content: Baidu’s content includes its search engine, web directory, and other services. It also offers a range of services such as cloud hosting, AI technology, mapping, and more. Baidu also produces original content for its users, such as news, articles, and videos.
5C Analysis

MOST Analysis

MOST Analysis

The MOST analysis framework is commonly used to identify an organisation's strategic goals, assess its strengths and weaknesses, and develop a plan to achieve its objectives. This analysis helps organisations to focus on what they want to achieve and how to achieve it, while also identifying potential roadblocks or obstacles that may arise along the way.

  • Mission
  • Objectives
  • Strategy
  • Tactics

We have created this analysis from a 3rd person perspective.

Innovation Scorecard

As part of our research and analysis activity, the team at Platform Executive assesses and then benchmarks businesses and the industry verticals in which they operate using a proprietary scoring mechanism.

First, we allocate a score of A-E for the industry vertical, gauged on the key organisations operating within the space; and then score the individual business using a 1-5 score.

A score of D-E within an industry means that it is potentially ripe to be disrupted by a new entrant into the marketplace; and/or vulnerable to technological change.

Likewise, a high score of 4-5 for the company in question indicates that in the view of the analysis team it lags behind notable businesses in terms of innovation and product pipeline.

Innovation Scorecard

Below is a guide to each score:

Industry score:

A The industry is amongst the most innovative; with the leading players all driving the sector forward.
Example industry: PaaS
B The industry and its leading players have a good track record of innovation; and can quickly react to change.
Example industry: Pharmaceutical
C Companies operating within the sector have adequate levels of innovation; and engage in R&D activities when appropriate.
Example industry: FMCG
DBusinesses operating in the industry do not invest enough time and resource into innovation. The sector is stagnant and a good candidate for disruption.
Example industry: Retail Banking
E The major players in the sector seem to lack suitable product development roadmaps; and as a result the sector is highly vulnerable to industry change.
Example industry: Publishing


Company score:

1 The business is amongst the leading players in terms innovation and product pipeline. This will fulfil and reinforce the operations of the business in the medium to long-term.
2 The business has a good track record of innovation, in terms of its products and/or its business model. It is therefore more likely to be able to react and adapt to any changes to the industry.
3 The business is deemed to have an adequate innovation plan, build on research and development and sustainability where appropriate. The business has a product development strategy.
4The business needs to invest more resource and/or intellectual capital in product development, pipelines and/or its business model. The business is at risk of stagnation.
5 The business seems to lack a suitable product development roadmap; and as a result is vulnerable to any notable industry change and/or new entrants in the marketplace.
The team at Platform Executive has judged Baidu as having an innovation score of B3.


The appendices section of this report contains supplementary information that the team at Platform Executive deems helpful in providing a more comprehensive understanding of the report's contents.

This information is not considered an essential part of the study but serves as a useful supplement to the main text.


This study on Baidu forms part of our series of competitive intelligence reports, which focuses on 10,000 of the largest corporates.

The information and data included are updated on a timely schedule to ensure that our Premium members receive the most up to date information .

The report is based on information and learning from the following sources:

  • Corporate websites
  • Proprietary research databases
  • SEC Filings
  • Corporate press releases
  • News articles
  • Financial data API's
  • Product-matching algorithm

Further Information

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The facts of this report have been gathered in good faith from both primary and secondary sources. It is believed to be correct at the time of publication, but cannot be guaranteed. As such Platform Executive can accept no liability whatever for actions taken based on any information that may subsequently prove to be incorrect.


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The changelog for this report can be found below, complete with the next scheduled update:

v1.1: Initial load of report
Date: 1st March 2023

Key Financials added (BETA)
Date: 17th March 2023

Next scheduled update: 29th May 2023

Industry Keywords