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Chinese search engine Baidu hires Weibo CFO as finance chief amid AI push

Baidu is trying to drive a recovery in its fortunes after a string of regulatory investigations last year hit profit

Reuters  |  Shanghai 

Baidu, Chinese internet giant

giant Inc said on Monday it had hired the chief of Corp as its chief financial officer, marking a leadership change for the firm as it hones its focus onto

The appointment of Herman Yu, Weibo's since 2015, sees stalwart Jennifer Li step down as after almost a decade in the role to become a senior adviser to Baidu's top management, the company said in a statement.

is trying to drive a recovery in its fortunes after a string of regulatory investigations last year hit profit. A sharper focus on mobile and (AI) helped boost the firm in the latest quarter.

"I look forward to working with Herman in his new capacity, as enters the next stage of growth in the AI era," Chairman Robin Li said in a statement, citing Yu's long financial experience with US-listed firms.

has been forced to revamp its business model and focus to keep pace with its main local tech rivals - Tencent Holdings Ltd and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd - which are spending billions of dollars expanding into new markets.

Li, one of China's most powerful female tech figures, will remain chief executive of Baidu's private equity unit Capital, which focuses on investment opportunities in AI.

Yu, who studied in California, has previously worked at Adobe Systems Inc and VeriFone Systems Inc, and sits of the boards of a number Chinese tech-related firms including 58.com Inc and ZTO Express Inc.

Weibo, backed by Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba and which operates one of China's most popular microblog platforms, was not immediately available for comment.

First Published: Mon, September 18 2017. 11:16 IST
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