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Google Has ‘A Chance’ To Make A Comeback In China, Baidu Investor Says

One of the first investors in China’s biggest search engine said Tuesday that Google has “a chance” of making it in China.

Speaking at the CNBC East Tech West conference in the Nansha district of Guangzhou, China, the managing partner of venture capital firm GGV, Jixun Foo, said the U.S. search engine may have to adjust to local demands in China to become a success.

“There is always a chance (of a return) … The market is big enough but there is a regulatory factor that Google has to adjust itself to, or any foreign companies have to adjust itself to. There is also the fact that you have to localize your service,” he told CNBC’s Deirdre Bosa.

Jixun Foo’s first investment as a venture capitalist was in Baidu, China’s biggest search engine and a potential rival to Google should the U.S. tech giant return to the Chinese market. He is adamant that Google could successfully make a comeback in China, eight years after it pulled out of China, by following Baidu’s own localized strategy.

“When Baidu launched its search engine, it localized its service with specific needs of the consumer. At the time of 2003, it launched an MP3 search. That was something the consumer wanted to have. If Google has the will, there’s a way,” said Jixun Foo.

Google closed its internet search engine service in mainland China in 2010, saying it was no longer willing to censor search results. It instead redirected users to an unfiltered search engine from Hong Kong. China, at the time, called Google’s move to stop censoring results “totally wrong.” However, a reversal from the Silicon Valley giant is reportedly on the cards as U.S. tech firms look to enter the world’s second-largest economy. – CNBC

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