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Facebook deny reports they are buying into China

Rachel Hawkes (Social Media Portal) - 20 November 2007

It was reported in The Times on Monday 19th of November that Facebook made an offer of $85 million USD to purchase one of China's biggest social networks,  Zhanzuo is home to over seven million Chinese people.

Rumours were squashed overnight, as a representative of Facebook contacted CNET via email disputing the claims. Facebook are quoted as saying, "No offer has been made, and no acquisition of any company in China is being considered by Facebook.  We do not know who the spokeperson is that they are referring to in The Times story and were never contacted by the paper to confirm the accuracy of this story."

Facebook recently acquired a Chinese domain, which fuelled speculation that they were soon to make their entry in the controversy-ridden country.  Entering this market will carry risks, as the Chinese government heavily monitor and restrict the Internet.  The purchase of an established network in this region would have given Facebook a solid route to market in an area that is well known to be a 'hard nut' for Western companies to crack.

Facebook's biggest competitor MySpace launched a Chinese language version of their site in April of this year and Google and Yahoo! have both set up business in China.  None have seen the results they would have anticipated.

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