Kuaishou Technology is a Chinese short-video platform(much like TikTok) which was founded in 2011 as a GIF sharing platform by former Google employee Hua Su. They pivoted to short-video in 2013, and added live streaming in 2016. It is backed by Tencent Holdings.
It IPO’d in Hong Kong on Friday – Feb 5th at a price fixed at 115 HK Dollars a share but surged 200% to open at 338 HKD. The IPO raised $5.4 billion which is the largest tech IPO since Uber in March 2019($8.1 billion). It closed at 300 HKD valuing Kuaishou at $159 billion, around $20 billion shy of its rival TikTok owner ByteDance’s $180 Billion.
Its main offering is live streaming which is also its biggest cash cow. The audience can gift the streamers through the app of which Kuaishou takes a percentage. It also enables streamers to sell their products through the app acting like an e-commerce platform again, a share of such transaction goes to its pockets. Other than these, it also makes money through ads.
It had about 263 million daily active users, less than half of ByteDance’s Douyin(600 million) as of Nov 2020. But still its revenue climbed 49% for the first 9 months of 2020 to $6.3 billion. Furthermore, the engagements that the users have with the streamers is what drives the business. Live streams are more appealing to the users as they can interact with the streamers and watch them live. As of now, it’s popularity seems to be in an upswing. Possibly it goes on into the future as well.