Lu Fanxi, the former president of peer-generated content at Chinese online giant Youku Tudou, has been detained on corruption charges. The move comes as part of a wider anti-graft campaign in China. Fanxi had already left the company by the time Jack Ma’s e-commerce giant Alibaba acquired it for $4.8 billion. Fanxi left in July while Alibaba closed its deal in November last year.
An internal Youku Tudou memo sent to its film division Heyi Film about the arrest has been circulated widely in the Chinese media. “From the information we have now, we know that former employee Lu Fanxi is suspected of exploiting his position to undertake illegal, criminal activities,” read the notice.
Lu Fanxi was responsible for a viral hit “Little Apple,” a Chinese pop song and accompanying video, that has been compared to Korean singer Psy’s global phenom “Gangnam Style.” It is believed Lu Fanxi has been arrested on suspicion of alleged kickbacks.
There has been a crackdown across China’s booming media industry. Last July, former Tencent exec and Alibaba Digital Entertainment Group head Patrick Liu Chunning was revealed to have been arrrested on corruption charges. Days later, a number of other former employees at Chinese Internet giant Tencent were also detained. In December last year, Chinese conglom Fosun founder Guo Guangchang, the 17th richest person in China with an estimated net worth of $5.6 billion, was briefly detained by Chines authorities. Fosun is an investor in Jeff Robinov’s Studio 8.