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Chinese search giant Baidu just bought an e-reader maker

The Sina Tech news blog reported earlier today  that Baidu, China’s home-grown version of Google, now own about 40% of Fan Shu, maker of the Yambook ebook reader. Details haven’t been confirmed, but the deal is reportedly worth 47.6 million yuan ($7.4 million USB).

Fan Shu have a number of different Yambook models on the Chinese market, with specs ranging from Wifi to 3G. They also have their own ebookstore as well as a PC and Android reading apps. The Baidu deal would value Fan Shu at 120 million yuan.

IMO this rumor is very likely true. A couple weeks ago Baidu signed a distribution agreement with a number of Chinese publishers that gave Baidu the right to sell their ebooks. The deal legitimized Baidu’s Wenku  books portal, which had previously been accused of wide-spread piracy.

Baidu are clearly making a push into ebooks. Buying Fan Shu would be a good way to bring the new content to market in the minimum time.


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Mike Cane August 4, 2011 um 2:10 pm

Does it use an eInk screen or non-backlit LCD? Now we can account for eInk sales skyrocketing each year, if so.

Nate Hoffelder August 4, 2011 um 2:12 pm


Mike Cane August 4, 2011 um 8:43 pm

Aha! So several million have been selling in China via various companies.

Nate Hoffelder August 4, 2011 um 8:46 pm

Well, no. The Chinese E-ink e-reader market is supposed to be under a million devices a year.

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