A wildly popular Chinese news app is fast becoming one of the world’s hottest upstarts.
Founded by a former Microsoft (MSFT, Tech30) employee, Toutiao uses artificial intelligence to create personalized feeds of news and videos based on users’ interests. And it has global ambitions.
Investors are betting it knows what it’s doing: they put a valuation of $11 billion on Toutiao following a recent fundraising round, according to CB Insights. Twitter (TWTR, Tech30), by comparison, is worth $12.3 billion.
The app is the brainchild of 33-year-old Zhang Yiming, who started it in 2012 after previously setting up a real estate portal and working for an online travel company.
Former employees describe him as a thinker who spends his free time writing code and reading about management and technology.
The app analyzes its users’ social media interactions and the content they consume, which it sources through more than 4,000 partnerships with media companies. Read more at CNN.