SHANGHAI, March 22 China's Sina Corp
will launch its own online payment service WeiboPay in April to
help make money from its widely used microblogging platform, the
official China Daily reported on Friday, quoting a company
The e-payment service will allow microblogging users or
Weibo users to buy items off the platform, by teaming up with
merchants who want to sell products through their corporate
microblogs, Hong Lizhou, general manager of Weibo's marketing
strategy told the newspaper.
Launched in late 2009, Sina's Weibo has over 500 million
users to date. The company, which also runs China's largest
online Internet portal, has searched for ways to balance users'
needs with making money off the platform.
Sina's Weibo is one of China's top social-networking
platforms with celebrities and politicians blogging on it.
Facebook Inc and Twitter are blocked in China.
WeiboPay will compete with Alibaba Group's
affiliated company, Alipay, which has the lion's share of the
Hong said users who want to purchase items off Weibo don't
necessarily have to use WeiboPay and that they could other
options such as credit cards or Alipay, according to the report.
A Sina spokesman could not be reached for comment.