China's Tencent Internet service invests in, a healthcare website


'Compliant' drug information for physicians is one targeted goal

Just as many Internet businesses are jostling for preeminence in the US healthcare space, so are native Chinese companies in that market, which continues to grow at double-digit rates. The latest action is a US$70-million investment by Tencent Holdings, a Hong Kong-listed Internet giant in the China market. (also known as Ting Ting Group) claims to be the world’s largest online professional community of physicians and researchers, with four million registered users in China and elsewhere. A company statement says that it is planning to use the investment, in part, to “create better products and content for doctors in China and to bring doctors and pharmaceutical (medical device) companies together on a single platform that can be accessed through multiple channels and allows for a more legally compliant and effective way of exchanging ideas and knowledge.” The company also operates a physicians’ messaging service and a consumer-health information service.

Earlier this year, according to a report from TechCrunch, Tencent’s rival Alibaba Group made a healthcare-related investment of its own by acquiring Citic 21CN, a drug data company that is building an app to enable online authentication of drugs.

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