On November 20, paybaike.com reported on its official WeChat account that Bilibili acquired 65.5% equity of Zhejiang Yongyi Electronic Payment Co., Ltd., a licensed payment institution, for about 118 million yuan ($18.5 million). After the acquisition, Bilibili has become the controlling shareholder and has officially obtained the payment license.
Yongyi possesses internet payment license enabling business across China, but the license is due June 2022, less than one year before renewal.
As early as November last year, Bilibili recruited new staff for its payment business, responsible for “designing payment-related products” and “research and development of core technologies of Bilibili payment platform.” In January this year, Bilibili‘s affiliated company Shanghai Magic Electric Information Technology Co., Ltd. completed the filing of domain names such as “bilibilipay.com” and “bilibilipay.cn.”
Over the past two years, many Chinese internet companies have deepened their work in the financial payment field. Several existing tools occupy space in the market, such as WeChat pay, Alipay, JD.com pay and Meituan pay, and many companies have also obtained payment licenses directly or indirectly, including Ctrip, Kuaishou, ByteDance and Pinduoduo.
Douyin, a short video platform in China, obtained a payment license last year by acquiring Wuhan Hezhong Yibao Technology Co. Ltd., and launched Douyin payment in January this year, which is now the primary payment tool in the app.
On November 19, Guangdong Alpha Animation and Culture Co., Ltd. released an announcement at the Shenzhen Stock Exchange, suggesting Bilibili has wholly acquired its original cartoon platform Youyaoqi. Bilibili spent 600 million yuan in the acquisition.
Youyaoqi was established in 2009, and its main business includes the operation of “Youyaoqi Original Comic DreamWorks” web and “Youyaoqi Comic” app, online comic publication, online animation production, animation copyright operation and more.
Youyaoqi now has over 32 million users, more than 70,000 original cartoonists, and more than 45,000 serial original comic works. It owns “One Hundred Thousand Bad Jokes,” “Rakshasa Street,” “BEE,” “Duannao” and other IPs. In 2020, its revenue reached 40.3132 million yuan, and in the first half of 2021, its revenue registered 10.666 million yuan.
Previously, Bilibili and Youyaoqi reached cooperation on copyright. Animation works adapted from IP of several major cartoons owned by Youyaoqi were broadcast simultaneously in Bilibili, and the view volume of the second season of Rakshasa Street on Bilibili exceeded 300 million.
Li Ni, vice chairman and COO of Bilibili, said, “Youyaoqi is home to many popular original works, and we expect these head IPs will demonstrate in a diversified way in the content ecology of bilibili.”
According to iResearch’s Report on called 2020 China Animation Industry Research, Bilibili invested in 26 animation-related enterprises from 2017 to 2019. Since the beginning of this year, Bilibili has also invested in many emerging fields, including bosie, a cutting-edge designer brand, and S.ENGINE, a coffee brand.