Youku.com, the mainland's largest online video provider, plans to increase investments after reporting a smaller loss in the second quarter than a year ago. The Beijing-based company's net loss was down 55 per cent in the past quarter to 8.1 million yuan (HK$9 million) from 62.6 million yuan a year earlier, due to a stronger performance from its brand advertising sales. The loss was less than the average net loss projection of 37.5 million yuan from four analysts' estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Youku.com's turnover rose 178 per cent to 197.8 million yuan, from 71.2 million yuan the previous year. This beat the high end of the company's previous revenue guidance by 18 per cent. For the third quarter, Youku forecast year-on-year growth in revenue of between 110 per cent and 120 per cent. Chairman and chief executive Victor Koo Wing-cheung yesterday said 'more aggressive investment in content and technology' would be made as the company 'pulls further away from the competition'. Top mainland competitors include Tudou, Sohu Video, PPTV, Ku6 Media and Sina Video. Youku.com, whose service has been likened to those of global providers YouTube and Hulu, generated US$826 million from its initial public offering in New York last December and a secondary offering in May. 'The recent follow-on offering gives us a stronger balance sheet to help the company invest more in our future growth,' chief financial officer Dede Liu said. In June, Youku.com launched its paid content platform, Youku Premium, which has a three-year deal to show up to 450 movies from Warner Bros Home Entertainment Group's mainland joint venture, CAV Warner Home Entertainment Co. Internet market-monitoring firm iResearch estimated that Youku.com last year commanded a 37 per cent market share in terms of total user time spent viewing online videos on the mainland and 21 per cent of advertising on online video portals.