NetEase Surpasses Meituan, Becoming the Fourth Largest Internet Company in China by Market Value

The market value of Chinese internet companies is undergoing new changes.

On December 14th, as of the time of writing, NetEase‘s market value on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange reached HKD 53.06 billion, surpassing Meituan‘s market value of HKD 51.92 billion. It also surpassed and Baidu, becoming the fourth largest internet company in China by market capitalization, following Tencent, Pinduoduo, and Alibaba Group Holding Limited.

In February 2021, when Chinese concept stocks were generally rising, the market value of Meituan was about four NetEases. Two years later, the market value of NetEase surpassed that of Meituan.

NetEase‘s smaller decline in stock price is one of the main reasons for its market value surpassing Meituan. Compared to NetEase‘s peak market value of HKD 7177.54, the decline is 25%, while Meituan‘s highest market value was HKD 26203.11, with a decline of 80%.

NetEase released its third-quarter report on November 16, showing a net income of 27.3 billion yuan (approximatly $4 billion), an increase of 11.6% year-on-year. In terms of specific business performance, several new game products performed exceptionally well, with the mobile game “Nishuihan” winning the championship in its segment and driving the net income of the gaming sector to reach 21.8 billion yuan (approximatly $3.1 billion). Additionally, Youdao’s net income was 1.5 billion yuan (approximatly $0.2 billion), an increase of 9.7% year-on-year; NetEase Cloud Music’s net income was 2 billion yuan (approximatly $0.3 billion), a decrease of 16.3% year-on-year; and the net income from innovation and other businesses was also around 2 billion yuan, slightly increasing compared to last year.

NetEase executives have previously stated during a conference call that the microtransaction model of the mobile game “Nishuihan” has driven higher payment ratios compared to other products. Additionally, several new games such as “Shediao” and “Mission Zero” have also entered the online launch plan.

On the second day of the financial report release, NetEase‘s stock price slightly increased to HKD 178.63, and its market value also grew to HKD 578.318 billion.

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Compared to the slight increase in NetEase‘s stock price, after Meituan released its third-quarter report, it experienced a significant decline in stock price. As of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange closing on November 29th, Meituan‘s stock price dropped from HKD 103 to HKD 90.45, with a decrease of 12.18%. Its market value also decreased from HKD 643.151 billion on the 28th to HKD 564.786 billion.

Speaking of the future of Meituan, CEO Wang Xing emphasized during a financial conference call that the management team has full confidence in the company’s long-term growth potential. Currently, Meituan‘s stock price in the secondary market only reflects the valuation of its food delivery business and does not align with the company’s intrinsic value. He also mentioned considering advancing a $1 billion repurchase plan and stated, “The company will make prudent decisions based on comprehensive considerations of business investment, cash position, and market conditions.”

It is worth noting that the stock prices of Chinese concept stocks such as Alibaba Group Holding Limited, Tencent Holdings Limited, Meituan Dianping, Inc., and Kuaishou Technology have all experienced significant declines from their peak levels. Among them, the highest point for Meituan‘s stock price this year was HKD 195, but it has been declining ever since. As of the time of writing, Meituan‘s stock price is HKD 82.65, representing a decrease of 57% from the aforementioned high point. NetEase Inc.’s stock price dropped by 2.26% after today’s opening and currently stands at HKD 164.5. It still has a way to go to reach its highest point of HKD 201.4.