VIVA, one of the largest digital magazine publishers in China announced recently completing Series B round of financing, which Qihoo360 participated as strategic shareholder. The funding would go towards “ramping up VIVA mobile magazine” to turn into the most influential wireless new media. Zhou Hongyi, the fearless leader of Qihoo would be sitting in their board. Other investors included Ventech and Highland Capital.
Founded in 2007, VIVA reading app is now available on almost all major smartphones, iPad and Android tablets. As of now, the new media outlet has been partnered with more than 300 mainstream Chinese magazines with over 14 million monthly active users reading north of 120 million issues every month. On why choosing Qihoo360 over other investors, Han said that Qihoo’s huge user and channel resources are what they’re looking for.
Qihoo is always a gateway company since desktop market. The problem is, on mobile security and browser market Qihoo is far from dominating. The company needs a new gateway to strengthen its position on mobiles, and reading is another nice try. The mobile reading market is picking up fast with total sales of RMB 1.215 billion in 2012Q1.