Taomee, Producer of the Largest Chinese Children’s Online Community “51mole” Receives Funding from Qiming Venture Partners
Taomee, the producer of China’s largest virtual community for children “51mole,” recently announced that it has received a US$5 million investment from leading venture capital firm Qiming Venture Partners. This is the largest investment in children’s internet sector in China.
Taomee was established in October 2007 by Benson Wang, Roc Cheng, and Crow Wei. It received angel investment from Jason Zeng, a co-founder of Tencent (HKEX: 700) and Bing Wang, Senior Vice President of Sina (NASDAQ: SINA). Taomee launched online community “51mole” in May 2008, which has quickly become the most popular virtual community for kids in China. “Kids love us, Moms trust us” is Taomee’s guiding principle, advocating a culture of “New childhood, New happiness” with a mission to provide Chinese children with healthy and entertaining internet products.
The Company aims to provide a fun and healthy online environment for children. Taomee limits play time to two hours a day and shuts down its service after midnight. It does not accept links or information unsuitable for children and also has a service team to investigate any inappropriate content on its site.
51mole’s creative design and augmented security features have gained it 30 million registered users and 10 million active users in just one year.
“We are very optimistic about the children’s segment of the fast growing internet market in China,” said JP Gan, Managing Director of Qiming Venture Partners, “the founding team of Taomee came from well-known internet company, is experienced with technology and product development, and has a deep understanding of its target market. After studying Taomee’s market, products, website traffic, and user base for almost a year, we are confident that Taomee is the leader in the children's internet market and believe it will emerge as a leading internet company in China. We look forward to working with the Taomee team to provide young Chinese internet users and their parents with healthy and fun products and build a national brand.
Speaking on the future strategy after financing, Benson Wang, CEO of Taomee, said, ”We have built the most professional and creative product team for Chinese children in cyberspace. We will continuously develop more and better green internet products suitable for the China market.”
While continuously developing new products, Taomee will at the same time pay close attention to family members’ experiences and needs regarding children’s internet products in order to ensure that every product truly achieves the goal "Kids love us, Moms trust us.”
Benson added, ”We work closely with education research institutes and schools, incorporating an expert advice system. We will use various methods to promote children’s development of good internet usage habits. While working hard to protect the safety of our children, we believe we can provide this generation of Chinese children with fun, cool products and a happy childhood.”
Taomee also announced it will launch China’s first science-fiction-themed internet product "SEER" this summer, which it has spent over a year developing. “SEER,” an acronym for the words “Space Energy Robot, is designed for 7 to 12 year old children in China. It is based on scientific and technological exploration, with the integration of physics, chemistry, astronomy and other scientific principles. Children will operate the robot by remote control on the spacecraft “SEER,” bravely flying into space to find new sources of energy for mother Earth. “SEER” utilizes “scientific missions” to combine education with entertainment. It aims to teach children environmentalism, analytical thinking, and teamwork.
Qiming Venture Partners is a leading early to growth stage venture capital firm in China with offices in Shanghai, Hong Kong and Seattle. Qiming and its affiliate in the US, Ignition Partners, together manage over $2.5 billion including two funds with $520 million under China management. Qiming invests in entrepreneurs creating the next generation of consumer, information technology, health care, and cleantech companies. Our partners are proven business leaders with strong operational experience and successful investment track records including many successful IPO’s and merger and acquisition transactions in both the U.S and China. While striving to be the investor of choice, Qiming will work also closely with other leading venture capital firms in China to deliver the investor value that young Chinese companies require.
Established in October 2007, Taomee is an internet service provider with a capable and experienced team of over 100 employees. The founders bring a wealth of experience in internet project development and operations from successful and well-known internet companies. Taomee is the most professional children’s internet service supplier. With “Kids play happy, Moms rest assured” as its guiding principle and its objective, it advocates “New childhood, New happiness“ as the culture of China.