Meta Media Shares Surge 201% On Adrian Cheng’s Appointment And Baidu AI Partnership

Meta Media Shares Surge 201% On Adrian Cheng’s Appointment And Baidu AI Partnership

Meta Media Holdings’ stock skyrocketed more than 201% over the past week after the Chinese media company appointed Adrian Cheng as a co-chairman and announced a partnership with the ChatGPT-like bot developed by Chinese search giant Baidu.

Meta Media said late Thursday that Cheng is joining the company as a non-executive director and a co-chairman. Cheng, who is the son of Hong Kong billionaire Henry Cheng Kar-shun, has been at the helm of real estate giant New World Development since 2017. Investors cheered news of the appointment, sending Meta Media’s Hong Kong-listed shares surged 79% to HK$1.13 ($0.14) apiece on Friday.

The company’s latest gain follows on the heels of another strong showing on Wednesday, when it soared 170% after announcing its business applications would become one of the first-batch of partners to trial Erine Bot, the conversational AI chatbot developed by Baidu. By the close of trading on Friday, Meta Media’s market cap had reached almost HK$432 million ($55 million).

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Cheng said he was honored to joined Meta Media as co-chairman, describing it as a “pioneering media group” after accepting the appointment. He told ZiWU, a platform owned by Meta Media: “I look forward to working with the team to forge a new and international path in the digital space of fashion, branding, design and creative industries in China, Asia Pacific and around the world.”

Founded in 1999 in Hong Kong, Meta Media publishes Chinese business and art content across different platforms, including the Chinese edition of Bloomberg Businessweek, InStyle and ArtReview magazines.

The company had previously been called Modern Media Holdings, but changed its name to Meta Media in early 2022 to reflect its futuristic ambitions. Since then, the company has joined hands with the venture capital arm of Baidu to develop a metaverse platform that aims to become “an international, fashionable and high-quality spiritual ideal residence,” according to Meta Media’s interim report. The metaverse platform has so far attracted participation from the Guangzhou Arbitration Commission, Meta Media said.

Cheng’s appointment at Meta Media marks another bet by the property tycoon on what many say will be the future of the internet–commonly referred to as Web3. The 43-year-old has invested in a string of Web3-related companies in recent years, both personally and through his blockchain fund C Capital, including blockchain gaming company Animoca Brands and crypto financial services firm Matrixport.

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