China's Xiaomi to Invest $1 Billion in Video Content

Xiaomi Smartphone H 2014

The smartphone maker is the latest Chinese tech firm to get into the entertainment industry

Chinese mobile-phone manufacturer Xiaomi will invest $1 billion in TV and video content, and has hired Chen Tong, a leading Internet executive from the online firm Sina, to oversee the fund.

Tong,'s editor-in-chief, will move to Xiaomi after working in Sina for 17 years, and will help the company expand its business in TV, set-top box and related-content business.

"Chen is familiar with social media and content," Lei Jun, Xiaomi's co-founder, said on his firm's Weibo microblog. "His joining will help diversify Xiaomi's engineering and designer talent structure and culture."

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He will operate Xiaomi's TV and video content business with another Xiaomi co-founder, Wang Chuan.

Chinese tech firms are currently on the offensive in the entertainment industry. The Internet giants Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent are all setting up entertainment units, and buying and making content.

Xiaomi currently sells a Xiaomi TV, Mi TV, and a set-top box, Mi Box, and hopes to replicate the success of its hardware business in the TV industry.

Xiaomi is the third largest smartphone manufacturer in the world after Samsung and Apple.