Chinese internet search firm Baidu is expanding its cloud computing services business in Singapore. The Asian search giant just launched its services in one of the region's largest information technology (IT) markets with aims to take a piece of the market share from its rivals Alibaba Group Holding and Tencent Holdings.
Baidu is reportedly planning to offer its services mainly for mainland Chinese companies that are currently expanding in Singapore. However, the NASDAQ-listed firm also has plans to cater to domestic players that are looking for high performance, secure, and reliable cloud services.
According to a statement released by the company this week, companies in Singapore will be able to take advantage of a variety of cloud services, including full-stack cloud options for applications such as gaming, internet services, and financial systems.
A report from Forrester Research has estimated that firms in Singapore could be spending up to $30 billion on enterprise technologies over the next two years. The country is expected to lead all other economies in Southeast Asia in its expansion into cloud computing.
Baidu is well aware of this trend and mentioned in its statement that Singapore is a prime location for its business as it expected to become one of the world's largest international financial centers. The city state's demand for cloud computing services is expected to grow at a substantial rate given how most companies have now adapted to new technology.
Leading the pack in providing these services are Alibaba and Tencent. Both companies have launched their own startups using these technologies, with expansions now sprouting outside their home markets. Baidu is currently playing catch up to both companies with plans of rapid expansion into new industries.
In a memo released to employees back in May, Baidu's chairman and chief executive, Robin Li Yanhong, called on the employees to "push for new boundaries." While Baidu has a much smaller cloud service operation when compared to Tencent and Alibaba, its main advantage is its expertise in search and artificial intelligence technologies.
The experience it has with its own search engines is expected to give the company an edge in developing advanced cloud computing systems. Baidu's core businesses, namely its search engine, online storage, and video streaming services, are all backed by cloud-based systems.
In China, Baidu is also rapidly expanding its cloud computing business. The company has an estimated 8.8 percent market share as of the first quarter of 2019. It currently ranks as the fourth-largest cloud services provider in China, right behind Alibaba, Tencent, and Amazon Web Services.