Described by different writers as a "podcast sharing service" and "Soundcloud-esque," Ximalaya seems to be a Chinese "personal radio" site that includes a great deal of music. Ximalaya recently received an $11.5 million Series A funding round from such VC firms as Kleiner Perkins, Sierra Ventures and SIG China. Ximalaya claims that users are currently uploading around 10,000 audio files a day.
But if you look at the current CrunchBase entry for Ximalaya there's an interesting description that appears to be a translation or by someone who speaks English as a second language:
"They re-invented the radio, so that people can not only anywhere, listen I want to hear, but can easily create a personal radio station, ready to share a good voice."
"In the Ximalaya or Himalayas, you can upload sound readily works to create a post of their own personal radio station, naturally accumulating fans, and always with them together."
From everything I'm reading about Ximalaya, "personal radio station" seems to be the best fit with a wide range of content being uploaded though music seems to be a big part of the mix. Hitting the "explore" button on the homepage, which I found by hovering over buttons for English language url, there seems to be a lot of pro content channels as well.
Ximalaya is said to claim:
"more than 6,000 content creators on its platform, with a total of over 240,000 channels and three million audio tracks. About 10,000 tracks are uploaded by users on a daily basis."
These numbers are a far cry from SoundCloud's 40 million (now larger) user base. Lead investors Kleiner Perkins, Sierra Ventures and SIG China must be seeing a lot of potential in Ximalaya including growth or usage stats to which we're not privy.
As TechNode notes, Kleiner Perkins is also an investor in SoundCloud and suggests that the announcement was designed to piggyback a bit off the SoundCloud/Twitter acquisition talks. Given the powerful rise of messaging in Asia, it makes sense to see user-generated content platforms also getting a look from investors.
At this point it would be great to have more info about the content on Ximalaya including how much is music and how much is pirated.
Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (@fluxresearch) is also beta blogging at DanceLand. To suggest topics about music tech, DIY music biz or music marketing for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.