Baidu Starting to Reap Gains of Google’s China Exit

It did not take long for Baidu to show everyone it benefited from Google’s widely publicized departure from China operations earlier this year. The Chinese search engine giant announced its unaudited first quarter earnings that indicated an increase of more than half of its earnings in the past year.

First quarter revenues hit 1.294 RMB, 59.6 percent higher than the same period of 2009. Even more impressive were operating profits that jumped 530.8 million RMB (+167.4%) and net income was 480.5 RMB (+165.3%)

Traffic acquisition costs as a component of cost of revenues were CNY171.3 million, representing 13.2% of total revenues, as compared to 15.3% in the corresponding period in 2009 and 16.0% in the fourth quarter of 2009.

As of March 31, 2010, Baidu had cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments of CNY4.909 billion. Net operating cash inflow and capital expenditures for the first quarter of 2010 were CNY426.2 million and CNY105.3 million, respectively.