On September 26, ByteDance’s health business unit Xiaohe’s WeChat mini-program stopped updating, and it will be officially offline from October 31. In July, the Chinese tech giant invested billions of dollars in a high-end private hospital, Amcare Healthcare, which will launch a mini-program for its services. According Haike NewsByteDance’s healthcare business is entering an accelerated period of resource integration, and a huge healthcare ecosystem is slowly forming.
ByteDance has never disclosed its strategy or progress regarding its healthcare business. Through various moves, including investments, mergers and acquisitions, and self-research projects, ByteDance now focuses more on medical services in healthcare, while also covering online and offline channels.
ByteDance’s healthcare ecosystem has covered many areas, including the popularization of online medical science, digital consultations, doctor’s appointments, offline clinics, and hospital diagnosis and treatment, as well as drug research and development, drug wholesale and retail, etc. The table expands.
In May 2020, Zhu Wenjia, who was then CEO of ByteDance’s news aggregator Jinri Toutiao, led the acquisition of China’s largest professional popular medical science knowledge platform, Baikemy, at a price below l ‘offers Baidu. With that as a starting point, the medical layout of ByteDance began to take shape.
In August 2020, Tencent News reported that Wu Haifeng, the former vice president of Baiduand Sun Wenyu, the former executive director of Baidu, had joined ByteDance. Two months later, an internet medical startup named 1024Jiankang founded by the two became wholly owned by ByteDance. At the end of the year, ByteDance established a special department responsible for its healthcare business, headed by Wu Haifeng, who reported to Zhang Yiming, the founder and then CEO of ByteDance. This department is known as “Xiaohe Health”.
Overall, China’s healthcare industry still has a lot of room for development. According to data from Chinese research institute iiMedia Research, the overall revenue of China’s healthcare industry has maintained steady growth from 2014 to 2021, with revenue in 2021 reaching 8 trillion yuan. (1.11 trillion dollars), an increase of 8.1%, and it is expected to reach 9 trillion yuan in 2024. The development of China’s healthcare industry is comparable to the global level, although it There is still a large gap between China and more developed countries in the proportion of medical and health expenditure to GDP.
ByteDance’s healthcare business was once benchmarked against major industry players such as JD.com and Ali Baba. With its web traffic and user base accumulated by Toutiao and Douyin, the Chinese version of TikTok, as well as the powerful algorithmic technology of ByteDance, it is not impossible for the company’s health activity to exceed d other leading platforms.
Meanwhile, ByteDance’s revenue growth rate has slowed in recent years and its core business is no longer booming. It is now urgent for the company to explore alternative sources of growth. However, in the face of competition from Ali Baba, JD.com and Baidu in the healthcare industry, as well as China’s increasingly stringent industry regulations, ByteDance’s future healthcare development path is unclear.