Life after Google? The Way Forward for US Internet Firms and Investors in China

Duncan Clark , Visiting Scholar at Stanford Program on Regions of Innovation and Entrepreneurship (SPRIE),Stanford University

Open to the public RSVP required by 5PM April 12

As China's Internet population surges towards the half billion mark—double the United States—how are U.S. Internet companies faring in China? Google, Facebook, eBay, Yahoo and others have all faced challenges in China. These include external (competition, regulation/censorship) and internal (management, strategy). Can these firms find a viable position in China? Will emerging players such as Groupon fare any better? Although U.S. Internet companies have struggled, U.S. institutional investors have reaped rich rewards from stakes in leading Chinese firms such as Tencent, Baidu and Alibaba/Taobao. Is this approach a better bet than hoping that U.S. firms gain a foothold in China? If leading Chinese Internet firms continue to dominate their home market, do they stand a chance to succeed internationally including through expansion or M&A in the US?

Duncan Clark is Chairman of BDA China, a company he founded in Beijing in 1994. Previously, Duncan was an investment banker with Morgan Stanley in London and Hong Kong, where he focused on telecommunications, media and technology (TMT) transactions.

He has guided BDA to become the leading consultancy servicing participants and investors in the TMT sectors in China and India. With a team of over 50 in Beijing and an office of 15 in New Delhi (opened in 2006), BDA has in recent years added to TMT an advisory capacity serving leading private equity firms investing in other fast-growing sectors in these countries such as education, retail and alternative energy.

Clark holds a B.Sc degree in economics with honors from the London School of Economics and Political Science, and currently chairs the school's alumni group in China. A UK citizen, Clark was raised in the UK, the United States and France.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011 | 12:00 pm — 1:15 pm
Philippines Conference Room, Encina Hall, 3rd Floor