Chinese-language search engine Baidu Inc. has taken a stake in Anjuke, a startup that operates listing portals for existing homes, new homes and rentals in China.
Baidu was the lead investor in Anjuke’s third round of fundraising, which raised $50 million, the companies said. Shanghai-based Anjuke said it will use the proceeds of its "series C" financing to invest in geographic expansion and for research and development.
Founded in 2007 by Mike Liang and Evans Jia, Anjuke employs 813 workers and offers services in 20 cities.
The company claims anjuke.com is China’s most popular portal for listings of existing homes for sale, with 10 million unique visitors per month. Anjuke last year launched a new-home listings portal, aifang.com, and rental site haozu.com.
Anjuke has been an important partner of Baidu, and Baidu is "pleased to invest in Anjuke and deepen our involvement in the real estate vertical," said Hesong Tang, general manager of corporate development at Baidu, in a statement.
Baidu claims to be the leading Chinese-language Internet search provider, with $1.2 billlion in revenue in 2010, up 78 percent from the year before.