Rumors have recently spread that Zhihu, a Chinese Q&A platform, is laying off employees in a low-key manner. Some reports suggest almost half of the employees in video-related departments have been let go.
Zhihu responded to Chinese media outlet, Securities Daily, on Friday, saying: “Video is an indispensable business of Zhihu. In 2021, we promoted the upgrade of Zhihu through answers in video form, co-creation and video content recommendation. In 2022, we will continue to strengthen our video offerings.”
The company added, “We have no layoffs planned in the video business, and we welcome interested individuals to join us, especially in products, operations and other positions. We encourage people to take a look at our job postings on the major recruitment websites.”
Zhihu was established in 2011, where users can ask questions, find answers and share their knowledge. On December 21st, Tencent, Sogou and Sinovation Ventures withdrew as shareholders of a Zhihu affiliate, to which the company commented that this structural change was a normal part of the firm’s corporate governance.
The company’s most recent financial report shows that revenue in the third quarter of 2021 was 823.5 million yuan ($130 million), an increase of 115.1% over the year before. Its net loss was 269.8 million yuan, while the net loss in the same period of 2020 was 110 million yuan.
In the third quarter of 2021, the number of average monthly active users (MAU) on Zhihu was 101.2 million, a year-on-year increase of 40.1%. The number of average monthly paid members were 5.5 million, up 109.9% year-on-year. Combined, these two types of users are the company’s main revenue drivers. Further, Zhihu‘s advertising revenue in the third quarter was 321.1 million yuan, an increase of nearly 38.9% compared with 231.1 million yuan in the same period of 2020.