Chinese short video and livestreaming platform ByteDance has rolled out a standalone brand, called Xiaohe Yiliao, to cover some of its healthcare businesses, in a move to compete in the booming online health sector under the backdrop of COVID-19, 36Kr reported on Monday, citing unnamed sources.
The company just launched the brand Dali Education to boost its online education business in an industry, which also gained momentum during the pandemic.
ByteDance operates the Toutiao Jiankang mini program, which is hosted inside the Jinri Toutiao content app and thus with rather low visibility. It allows users of the app to pay and consult doctors affiliated with large hospitals nationwide, such as the Peking University People’s Hospital, by just texting information and pictures about their illnesses.
In addition, the firm also owns the Lvsongguo app, which includes paid online consultation services, as well as free, basic medical information on different diseases such as depression. Earlier this year, ByteDance fully acquired online medical encyclopedia Baikemy.com, hosting an array of explainer videos by doctors about diseases.
ByteDance has now renamed both Toutiao Jiankang and Lvsongguo into Xiaohe, but is holding on to the Baikemy.com brand. The company didn’t immediately reply to KrASIA‘s request for comment.
While ByteDance’s health business is still at an early stage, Alibaba (NYSE: BABA) and JD.com (NASDAQ: JD) have already secured a firmer foothold in the sector. Alihealth (HKSE: 0241), which offers services including medicine on-demand and online consultation, now has a market capitalization of HKD 277 billion (USD 35.7 billion). JD.com has spun off its health unit JD Health, which shows similarities to Alihealth, and plans to list the unit in Hong Kong.