Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Dominating the verticals

An under-reported - in our opinion - operator in the online China B2B world is that other Hangzhou-based listed company, Netsun. They have always taken a completely different approach to their big brothers down the road at Alibaba and focused on dominating vertical market positions. Their Chemnet is an impressive market leader in the chemicals world.

They have also been building up a position in the textiles and garment industries. So, we note with interest another acquisition they have made of Yeshitech.com for Rmb 18 million. The key assets of this business are Texindex and 51Fashion amongst others. My colleagues tell me that this now gives Netsun 'full house' of the top 5 vertical garment/fashion B2B sites in China. Texindex and 51Fashion were the biggest competitors to Texnet which Netsun already owns. It also acquired efu.com in June last year.

The market quite likes them: market cap for the Shenzhen-listed stock today is Rmb3.38 billion (a VERY lucky number in Cantonese numerology) at the close play today with a p.e. just over 80 (more expensive than Alibaba).

All this is being run through the toocle.com 'front page' which is setting itself up to compete with the top flight of China's B2B players. I think this is a really interesting business (I don't own any shares, so this is an entirely independent comment) and you should watch it.

1 comment:

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