Competitor Alibaba may get all the attention but investors in home country rival Tencent had some reasons to feel fairly good about their pick this week. Though the company's first quarter earnings are a bit of a muddle due to some highly complex deals and a flurry of acquisition and investment activity, many of the results are very promising. Revenue went up 36 percent from a year ago while net profit surged 60 percent, reports the Wall Street Journal.
Mobile lead the way for a large chunk of Tencent's recent strength. WeChat mobile-messaging service, the company's flag-ship service and a similar ideas to Facebook's WhatsApp, and a second messaging app, QQ Mobile, drove top-line growth. Representing nearly 10 percent of total revenue, mobile games on the two platforms tripled from the previous quarter and brought in more than 1.8 billion yuan ($288.9 million). This blew away analyst predictions of only $800 M yuan.
Tencent has also had some difficulties, particularly in the mobile-payments end of the business, where regulatory uncertainty has China's framework for Internet finance somewhat opaque and underdeveloped. Tencent also has a very formidable competitor in Alibaba, which remains on course to take the New York Stock Exchange by storm.
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