/China’s web celeb of the year Papi Jiang’s major investor asked for a breakup

China’s web celeb of the year Papi Jiang’s major investor asked for a breakup

Web celeb Papi Jiang and her business partner, the well-known online show Logic Talk Show, have broken up.

Papi Jiang’s co-worker Yang Ming posted on Wednesday to WeChat Moments, confirming that Logic Talk Show has withdrawn all its investment from Papi Jiang, NetEase Money reported.

Previously called the “web celeb of the year” by Chinese media, Papi Jiang became famous for her humorous short videos. Her fame skyrocketed earlier this year, when her videos had an average view count of 7.53 million.

In March, she landed herself RMB 12 million (USD 1.8 million) from four investors, among which was Logic Talk Show, one of China’s most successful knowledge-sharing we-media. In April, she and Logic Talk Show worked together, selling her first advertisement for RMB 22 million.

However, the web world is ever short of poster girls, and fame and reputation may pass and fade. Papi Jiang, although still holding over 20 million Weibo fans, and although several of her video clips have been played over 100 million times, is no longer the heroine of news headlines.

According to Baidu Index, searches of the key word “Papi Jiang” started to climb in February, and reached its peak in April, with 254,470 searches in a single day. Since August, that number has hovered at an average of 11,000 searches per day.

The Baidu index for the searches of "Papi Jiang" in 2016
The Baidu index for the searches of “Papi Jiang” in 2016

Also in April, China’s media watchdog, The State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT), temporarily suspended Papi Jiang’s online videos, criticizing the vulgar language she used in the videos.

“When it comes to making investments, we sometimes go astray due to temptations,” Li Tiantian, the CEO of Logic Talk Show, said in July. “Some investments we made should be considered a shame on us. We were not doing what we’re supposed to do.”

Once a smash partnership, now a smashed promise of sustainable profits. What’s the future of the web celeb economy? No doubt there is somebody around the corner ready to take the spotlight.

(Top photo from Baidu Images)

Ke graduated from the University of Edinburgh with a Master's Degree in English and has worked on projects with Ipsos MORI and SDI Media. She's particularly intrigued by China's thriving technology scene and is eager to write about this flourishing industry.