Shares of Zhihu hit record high in HK amid generative AI fever
Published: Feb 08, 2023 10:15 PM
Baidu's annual AI developer conference held on December 27, 2021. Photo: screenshot of livestream

Baidu's annual AI developer conference held on December 27, 2021. Photo: screenshot of livestream

Shares of Zhihu, the Chinese equivalent of Quora, hit an all-time high of HK$36.6 ($4.66) intraday on Wednesday since its secondary listing debut in Hong Kong last April, as ChatGPT fuels a stock market fever in the world.

Zhihu's shares soared as much as 57.42 percent before closing up 39.57 percent in the Hong Kong market on Wednesday.

The enthusiasm across global equity markets for Microsoft-backed ChatGPT has seen stocks linked to AI chatbots skyrocket. Adding to the fever, Chinese technology giant Alibaba has hinted at an interest in joining the AI bot race.

"Frontier innovations such as large language models and generative AI have been our focus areas since the formation of DAMO in 2017. 

"As a technology leader, we will continue to invest in turning cutting-edge innovations into value-added applications for our customers as well as their end-users through cloud services," an Alibaba spokesperson told the Global Times on Wednesday.

In another high-profile move, Google CEO Sundar Pichai introduced Bard in a blog post on Monday. The conversational AI service would be opened "to trusted testers ahead of making it more widely available to the public in the coming weeks."

After news broke on Tuesday morning that Chinese tech giant Baidu has plans to launch a ChatGPT-style bot called ERNIE Bot, its shares surged and finished 15.33 percent up that day in Hong Kong and 12.18 percent in US trading. 

The first Chinese answer to ChatGPT will open for public use in March. It may conduct "beta testing earlier to keep up with Google and Microsoft," Baidu told the Global Times on Tuesday.

A similar trend has lately taken hold of Chinese mainland shares, with some of the most active stocks categorized as "ChatGPT concept" issues more than doubling since late January.

As ChatGPT subscriptions surge, there is huge potential in AI-generated content, Chinese news site reported on Wednesday.

While current user experience, application scenarios, barriers to end and commercialization have yet to prove that colossal investing in ChatGPT-related opportunities makes sense, large platform firms with data and capital advantages are expected to benefit more from the ChatGPT enthusiasm than AI software firms.

ChatGPT, only launched in November, is on track to tally 100 million monthly active users (MAUs), Yahoo Finance reported on Friday, citing data compiled by UBS.
That suggests the conversational AI bot has been much more readily adopted than TikTok or Instagram.

TikTok, the video-sharing app owned by ByteDance, took nine months to hit 100 million MAUs while Meta-owned Instagram took two and a half years to reach the same milestone.

Global Times