【雷竞技平台官网】中国互联网的烧钱之战 Big Read: China cash burn

2023-09-19 09:56:09
本文摘要:Burning cash has become alarmingly fashionable among Chinese internet companies, many of whom have taken to paying customers massive subsidies to use their services in hopes that their competitors go out of business before they run out of money. 中国的互联网公司极为风行“烧钱”,已到了令人担忧的程度。

Burning cash has become alarmingly fashionable among Chinese internet companies, many of whom have taken to paying customers massive subsidies to use their services in hopes that their competitors go out of business before they run out of money. 中国的互联网公司极为风行“烧钱”,已到了令人担忧的程度。很多公司都习惯了向用户缴纳高额补贴,以更有用户用于它们的服务,确信在它们花光钱之前,竞争对手们不会再行倒闭。One start-up, Emao.com, which aims to be an online platform for car dealerships, has based its entire marketing strategy around losing money. “We burn cash from our investors to win the hearts of car shoppers,” a recent ad says. 初创公司一猫汽车网(Emao.com)期望打造出一个汽车经销商的在线平台,其整个营销战略都是环绕着赔钱创建的。

“火烧投资人的钱,博买车人的心”——该公司近期投出这样的广告词。Travis Kalanick, chief executive of Uber, boasted earlier this year that the ride-sharing app’s China affiliate was losing more than $1bn a year, in part because of the subsidies it was paying to grab market share. A local car hailing app, Didi Kuaidi, is waging a fierce price war against Uber in several cities. 优步(Uber)首席执行官兹拉维斯卡兰尼克(Travis Kalanick)今年早些时候撒谎,这款共计乘应用于的中国分支一年亏损逾10亿美元,部分原因是缴纳补贴以抢占市场份额。本土叫车应用于滴滴慢的(Didi Kuaidi)正在多个城市与优步大打价格战。

Uber’s competitors have made it clear they will not be outspent. Jean Liu, Didi’s president, said in September that “we wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for burning cash”. The company’s chairman, Cheng Wei, said the company spent $4bn last year in what he called “market fostering”. 优步的竞争对手们表态说道,它们在花钱上会落在人后。滴滴慢的总裁柳青(Jean Liu)去年9月回应:“不烧钱我们回头将近今天这一步。”该公司董事长程维回应,去年滴滴慢的花费40亿美元展开“市场培育”。

Executives from another rival carhailing app, Yidao Yongche, said last month that they are “entrapped in a cash burning vortex”. Zhou Hang, the chief executive, said recently: “We have prepared at least Rmb3bn-Rmb5bn of ammunition for the year.” 另一家叫车应用于不易到用车(Yidao Yongche)的高管们上月回应,他们“接踵而来了烧钱的漩涡”。该公司首席执行官周航近期回应:“我们为今年打算了最少30亿到50亿元人民币的‘弹药’。” “Burning cash” may not sound like a viable business model, but these young companies argue that paying customers to use their services is necessary to build their brands and achieve the scale needed to compete. This is especially true in China, where a shift from an investment-driven to a consumption-led economy, which the government insists is under way, makes the goal of buying Chinese consumers — in hopes that one day they will buy your wares — look appealing. “烧钱”听得一起有可能不看起来一种不切实际的商业模式,但这些创办旋即的公司主张,为了创建品牌,取得与人竞争所必须的规模,借钱让用户用于它们的服务是必不可少的。

在中国特别是在如此,中国正在从投资驱动型经济改向消费拉动型经济——政府否认转型正在展开中——这使“勾结”中国消费者的目的——即期望有一天他们不会出售你的产品——变得很有吸引力。At least some see it this way. Others claim the Chinese internet fad for burning cash heralds the top of an internet bubble. Just as Silicon Valley companies convinced investors that profits no longer mattered during the 1990s dotcom bubble, China’s internet companies have made a fetish out of losing money. 最少有一些人是这么看的。还有一些人则指出,中国互联网行业热衷烧钱的风气伴随着互联网泡沫快胀身下了。

在上世纪90年代的网络泡沫时期,硅谷公司劝说投资者,利润仍然最重要,如今中国的互联网公司也一样酷爱了亏钱。“A lot of these companies will be forgotten when the money runs out,” said Ma Jihua, founder of Datareal consulting, who estimates that as much as Rmb50bn a year is being poured into subsidies aimed at connecting Chinese consumers via their smartphones to taxis, massages and car washes. “钱用光后,很多公司都会被消逝,”达睿咨询(Datareal)创始人马继华回应。他估算,为了更有中国消费者通过智能手机用于微信、美容和洗车等服务,互联网公司每年用在补贴上的资金多达500亿元人民币。

But he concedes that companies have little choice. “In this market, if you don’t burn cash you won’t get market share which means you won’t get funding, consequently meaning you won’t stand a chance against competitors that do burn.” 但他也否认,企业别无选择。“在这个市场上,如果你不烧钱,你就无法取得市场份额,这就意味著你更有将近投资,结果是你在烧钱的竞争对手面前没什么机会。” ‘A big party for consumers’ “消费者的盛宴” Funded largely by venture capital and private equity firms, along with larger — and profitable — internet companies like Tencent and Alibaba, most of the subsidies are going into apps that aim to be the Uber of massages or the Airbnb of car washes. These “online to offline” services, or O2O, are the hottest investment theme in China’s internet sector. 投资主要来自风险资本公司、投资基金公司,以及腾讯(Tencent)、阿里巴巴(Alibaba)等规模更大并且盈利的互联网公司。


The potential benefits to the market leaders help explain why they are so willing to spend: according to HSBC, China’s O2O sector is a Rmb10tn market that is only 4 per cent penetrated, and grew 80 per cent year on year in the first half of 2015. HSBC estimates that in five years the “profit pie” in the industry would be worth Rmb26bn. 市场领军者的潜在利益有助说明它们为何如此乐意花钱:根据汇丰(HSBC)的数据,中国O2O市场有10万亿元人民币规模,而目前渗透率只有4%,这个市场在2015年上半年同比快速增长了80%。汇丰估算,这个行业的“利润蛋糕”在5年内将约260亿元人民币。“O2O right now is a big party for consumers,” said Meng Xing, CEO of Helijia, a health and beauty app, in an interview last month. “We have no plans to make profit in the near future, because the VCs are still offering money.” 身体健康美容应用于河狸家(Helijia)首席执行官孟醒上个月在一次专访中回应:“眼下O2O对消费者而言就像一场盛宴。

我们没在近期构建盈利的计划,因为风投还在获取资金。” Over the past year, his company has “burnt several hundred million renminbi,” he said, though he has cut back on subsidies after his main competitor went out of business. “That’s just how the Chinese internet is, it’s too popular. There are so many VC and [private equity] companies that are willing to fund these wars.” 孟醒回应,过去一年他的公司“烧毁了几个亿的人民币”,不过在仅次于的竞争对手破产后,他早已减少了补贴。“这就是中国互联网的情况,太火了。有很多风投和(投资基金)公司不愿为这些战争获取资金。

” Start-ups are busy raising funds from investors at ever more dizzying valuations, only to plough them back into subsidies. Recent funding rounds have valued Didi Kuaidi at $20bn, up from $15bn last July. Uber China was valued at $7bn in a January funding round, while the merger of Meituan and Dianping, the two largest food delivery and group discount sites, was valued at $15bn-$17bn in November. 各家初创公司都在忙着融资,它们的估值一次比一次难以置信,筹得的资金大多用作补贴。滴滴慢的去年7月估值为150亿美元,在最近几轮融资中已超过200亿美元。中国优步(Uber China)在今年1月的一轮融资中估值为70亿美元。去年11月,中国仅次于的两家美食店内和淘宝网站——美团(Meituan)和大众评论(Dianping)拆分,估值为150亿-170亿美元。

Many of these companies do not publish financial statements, so it is impossible to see what the true scale of cash burn is. Mr Zhou estimates that Rmb20bn was burnt by car-hailing apps like Yidao, Uber and Didi Kuaidi on rider subsidies in 2015, while Meituan Dianping, the biggest seller of restaurant reservations and cinema tickets in China, put out a cryptic press statement in February that said it had “saved food lovers Rmb58bn” in 2015. 这些公司大多没发布财务报表,所以外界无法获知它们实际的烧钱规模。周航估算,2015年不易到用车、优步和滴滴慢的等微信应用于在乘客补贴上烧毁了200亿元人民币。美团大众评论在2月份公布了一份模棱两可的新闻稿,称之为2015年“为吃货节省了580元人民币”,该公司是目前中国仅次于的订餐及电影票销售网站。Last year, 84 O2O companies went bankrupt, but the sector also attracted huge headline investments. Alibaba and its payment affiliate, Ant Financial, announced they will each invest Rmb3bn to develop a food delivery service called Koubei, while search engine Baidu has said it would invest Rmb20bn in Nuomi, a group discount and food delivery app. 去年中国有84家O2O企业倒闭,但该行业也更有了大量引人瞩目的投资。

阿里巴巴及旗下缴纳公司蚂蚁金服(Ant Financial)宣告将各自投放30亿元人民币,发展送餐服务“口碑”(Koubei)。搜索引擎百度(Baidu)则回应将向旗下淘宝和送餐应用于“糯米”(Nuomi)投放200亿元人民币。

JP Gan of Qiming, a venture firm that is funding the Helijia app, says there is method to the subsidy madness. “Most sophisticated venture capitalists are looking at the same model — you buy users, you buy service providers, you scale up the platform to 100 cities or 200 cities, and you build up a concentrated workforce to provide services to the parts of the cities where there are customers,” he says. 青云创投(Qiming)是投资河狸家应用于的风投公司之一,该公司的甘剑平(JP Gan)回应,这种疯狂的补贴不道德是有章法的。他说道:“多数资深的风险资本家都在盯着某种程度的模式——你卖用户,卖服务提供商,把平台扩展到一二百个城市,开会大量人手,向城市中消费者集中于的区域获取服务。” But the pitfalls are obvious in a sector where the providers are fragmented and the services closely resemble each other. Ken Xu of Gobi Capital, a VC firm in Shanghai, says the problem is that “the user has no loyalty to anybody in these sectors; they only go for the apps that have the subsidies. In car-hailing apps, everybody is starting to realise they are subsiding the same group of people who either use Uber or Didi Kuaidi, depending on who is paying them more.” 但是O2O行业的缺点也是显而易见的,比如供应商集中,服务同质性很高。

上海风险投资公司戈壁创投(Gobi Capital)的徐晨(Ken Xu)回应,问题在于“用户对这些行业的任何企业都没忠诚度,他们只用于有补贴的应用于。在微信应用领域,所有人都开始认识到,他们补贴的是同一群人,这群人既用优步也用滴滴慢的,谁补贴多就用谁”。‘Last man standing wins’ “最后还车站着的人就输掉了” The O2O model has been subjected to scrutiny elsewhere, especially in the US, where many apps that form the basis of the “gig economy” have failed after venture funding dried up. That experience has spawned worries in China about whether the same will happen once the era of “VC welfare” ends. 在其他地方,O2O模式早已遭到过检视,特别是在是在美国,许多构成“零工经济”(gig economy)基础的应用于都在风险资金耗尽后告终。

这些经验在中国引起忧虑:一旦“风投福利”时代落幕,否也不会再次发生某种程度的情况? One difference between the US and China, however, is that the offline shopping and services are so much farther developed in the US that “business is not desperate for the internet to make it more efficient or attractive”, says Duncan Clark, head of Beijing technology consultancy BDA and author of a forthcoming book on Alibaba. In China, bricks-and-mortar commerce is often overpriced or simply dismal, he says, so investors are betting that the internet will be the primary way that Chinese connect to services in the future. 不过中美之间有一个区别,就是美国的线下购物和服务要成熟期得多。北京博达克咨询公司(BDA China)的董事长邓肯克拉克(Duncan Clark)回应:“美国企业并不渴求用互联网来提高效率或减少吸引力。”邓肯写出的一本关于阿里巴巴的著作将要出版发行。

邓肯回应,在中国,实体商业往往产品定价过低,或者无法获取无聊体验,因此投资者坚信未来互联网将沦为中国消费者与服务“相连”的首要方式。“In the west, we’ve had efficient retail for a long time,” Clark adds. “In a sense China is leapfrogging the west.” “在西方,我们的零售长期以来是高效的,”克拉克补足称之为,“在某种程度上,中国正在打破西方。” Another advantage for China’s high tech economy is a distinctly low-tech factor: labour costs. Couriers are 10 to 20 per cent the cost of what they are in the US. 中国高科技经济的另一个优势是一个较低技术含量的因素:劳动力成本。中国租车成本是美国的10%至20%。

Hans Tung, a managing partner at GGV Capital, said that cheap labour and urban population density in China are among the main reasons why the O2O services are economic, compared with the US, where the sector has struggled. “In the US there has been uneven uptake of this so-called gig economy because consumers are more spread out, delivery cost is higher, usage frequency is lower,” he says. “It is harder, besides Uber and Airbnb, for start-ups in this category.” 纪源资本(GGV Capital)的管理合伙人童士豪(Hans Tung)称之为,廉价劳动力和城市人口密集是O2O服务在中国具备经济效益的两个主要原因,而在美国,这个行业发展艰难。“在美国,由于消费者更为集中、仓储成本更高、用于频率更加较低,这种所谓的零工经济发展不平衡,”他称之为,“除了优步和Airbnb外,这一类的初创企业是较为艰苦的。” In China these factors are all flipped in favour of the industry. “The costs of delivering O2O services are lower, urban population is denser, and therefore, the fundamentals of the sector can be better once there is consolidation around category leaders,” he says. 在中国,这些方面的因素都不利于O2O行业的发展。“O2O服务的仓储成本更加较低,城市人口密度更大,因此,一旦行业领头羊经常出现统合,行业的基本面有可能更佳,”他称之为。

But it is clear that subsidies still play a defining role. 但显而易见的是,补贴依然起着决定性起到。Companies are giving massive discounts to tempt consumers. At Rmb99 on the app goodchef.com, it is cheaper to invite a chef over to your house to cook a five-course Sichuan meal than to go to a restaurant, where the same meal might set you back Rmb200. Taking an Uber ride a short distance for Rmb8 is two-thirds the price of a ride in a licensed taxi, whose fares are already held low by government fiat. 企业以极低的优惠来更有消费者。在“好厨师”应用于上,只要99元人民币就可以请求一名大厨上门做到5道川菜,而去餐厅不吃某种程度一桌菜有可能要破费200元。

用优步短途上下班只必须8元人民币,是搭乘有牌照出租车的价格(早已被政府法令太低了)的三分之二。A driver for both Uber and Didi, who gave his name only as Mr Guo, says both companies pay subsidies that often amount to two to three times the cost of the ride. 一名只透漏自己姓氏郭的优步兼任滴滴司机称之为,两家公司缴纳的补贴一般来说相等于行程成本的两到三倍。“Subsidies are an essential part of the income. Because of the competition, the fare is very low,” says Mr Gou. “Without subsidies, the fare is not enough to cover the gas — it wouldn’t pay off.” “补贴是收益中必不可少的部分。

由于竞争,车费早已非常低了,”郭先生称之为,“如果没补贴,车费还过于油钱——划不来。” The ultimate viability of this business model depends on what happens when the money stops, as it inevitably will, say analysts. 分析师称之为,这种商业模式最后的可行性将各不相同暂停烧钱——这是不可避免的——后不会再次发生什么。

Last year, there were already signs that investors have had enough of “cash burn”. Pressure from investors was thought to be behind the merger last year of Didi Dache and Kuaidi Dache, two reigning taxi apps, who no sooner had solved their cash burn problem than Uber appeared on the scene. Later in the year, Meituan and Dianping merged, only to be confronted with search engine Baidu’s competing platform Nuomi. 去年早已经常出现了投资者受够了“烧钱”的迹象。来自投资者的压力,被指出是去年滴滴和慢的拆分背后的原因。这两家领先的微信应用于刚刚解决问题了烧钱的问题,优步就登场了。

去年末,美团和大众评论拆分,只是为了对付搜索引擎百度旗下的平台糯米。“That’s the story of the Chinese internet — the last man standing always wins. And sometimes when there are two last men standing they will merge,” says Mr Gan of Qiming. “这就是中国互联网的故事——最后一个车站着的人总会输掉的。有时,如果最后还车站着的是两个人,他们不会拆分,”青云的甘剑平称之为。Brian Viard, an economist who teaches at the Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business in Beijing, says platforms like Uber and Airbnb depend on large numbers of customers and sellers to achieve a critical mass, which drives down costs. But he said the fundamental model of “burning cash” is more about optimism than economics. 在北京长江商学院(Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business)教学的经济学家布赖恩维亚尔(Brian Viard)称之为,优步和Airbnb这类平台依赖大量的消费者和商家来构成充足大的规模,从而纳低成本。

但是他称之为,“烧钱”的基本模式更好与悲观有关,而不是成本效益。“A lot of these companies have one thing in common — their perceptions of the odds of success are higher than they actually are,” he says. “这些企业大多都有一个共同点——他们心目中的顺利几率低于实际情况,”他称之为。