Baidu announced it will open a second research facility in Silicon Valley Friday, in the hope of poaching talent for its machine-learning units, which are expected to shape its future business as traditional profits wane. The news follows the tech giant’s recent loss of three research executives in rapid succession, Bloomberg reports. Wang Jin, former head of the company’s autonomous car unit, announced his resignation today, revealing plans for his own driverless-car startup. A more painful loss came last week, when Andrew Ng, chief scientist and one of the founders of Google’s machine learning system, announced his departure. A day later, Tencent Holdings Ltd. named Zhang Tong, former deputy director of Baidu’s Big Data Lab, as head of its artificial intelligence team. Baidu’s profits suffered a 38% year-on-year plunge in the fourth quarter of last year following an advertising scandal.
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