It’s overtaken Facebook, bought stakes in Snapchat, Tesla and Hollywood films, and has quietly risen to rival Google and Netflix
It is China’s web giant and has a string of high-profile investments spanning Snapchat, Spotify, Tesla and Hollywood film and TV. It is a sprawling corporate giant that has recently overtaken Facebook to become the world’s fifth most valuable listed company – but few, in the west at least, will have heard of Tencent, even though it is worth half a trillion dollars and rising.
China is the world’s most populous digital market and the protection afforded by state censorship through the so-called great firewall – which has meant no competition from Facebook, Google, Twitter and Netflix – has helped Tencent flourish since it launched nearly two decades ago in Shenzhen. But in the last year the shares have been supercharged – climbing from less than HK$200 (£18) at the beginning of 2017 to HK$442 now – and the value of the company has soared.