Bbmao.com

Chinese Web surfers have Bbmao.com to thank for helping to eliminate thousands of irrelevant links, when they are searching for information.

Chinese Web surfers have Bbmao.com to thank for helping to eliminate thousands of irrelevant links, when they are searching for information.

But Bbmao.com is more than just an efficient Chinese language search engine.

Bbmao.com

CEO
Kiam Choo

Year founded
August 2005

Headquarters
Beijing, China

Web site
www.bbmao.com

Employees
15

Technology innovation
Patented technology for dynamically generated search results clustering, and social networking features in a metasearch engine.

The metasearch Web site is the first in China to offer dynamically-generated search results clustering from multiple search engines in China.

Bbmao's social networking feature that lets users save and share bookmarks of high-quality websites that offer pertinent information--think of it as "MySpace" for knowledge sharing.

It is this sharing of useful bookmarks by users, that gives Bbmao an added dimension.

Search results garnered by Bbmao.com from the likes of Baidu, Google and Yahoo are also clustered into categories, so users can zoom into a particular category instead of browsing all results.

China's first Web 2.0 search engine caters to what it terms "knowledge workers", the bulk of whom are office workers and university students.

The interesting name may have been a key factor in Bbmao's growing popularity.

The "mao" refers to the Chinese word for "cat", and pays homage to Deng Xiaoping's famous saying that "it doesn't matter if a cat is black or white; so long as it catches mice, it is a good cat."

And the "BB" bit?

Explained Kiam Choo, the Singaporean founder and CEO of Bbmao.com: "It is easy to remember and cute to type!"

"We can be accessed by anyone who reads Chinese anywhere in the world."
--Kiam Choo
CEO, Bbmao.com

The company was started in August 2005 with angel funding from BroadWebAsia and its chairman, Brad Greenspan--no stranger to building successful start-ups.

Greenspan was, of course, the founder of Myspace.com. He is also the chairman of Bbmao.com, and has already helped to tweak the company's strategy from a purely enterprise focus, to the consumer search market.

Bbmao's technology genesis had its roots in Kiam Choo's Master's degree in Artificial Intelligence and Non-linear Non-equilibrium Physics from the University of Toronto.

In fact, the journey started with him in 2004 as a one-man coding shop in Chengdu, dealing with technical issues like the lack of spaces between Chinese characters.

The company's search technology has been licensed to the popular Chinese portal, NetEase.com and other companies.

However, the company's main revenue source is Web advertising, as its search service is free for users.

Potential spin-offs include a version for mobile phones and devices. A jobs metasearch feature has already been added.

The company is focussed on expanding its user base in the China market, while the global market--and the company's English site at www.accumo.com--are on the back-burner.

The potential market is huge, as Kiam Choo puts it: "We can be accessed by anyone who reads Chinese anywhere in the world."

He already has a catchy tagline in mind: "When there's a page to catch, use the Cat!"

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