Yesterday, LinkedIn was able to do something that Facebook, Twitter and Google haven’t — launch a beta Chinese social site dubbed “领英”. The professional network has been active to Chinese users for more than a decade now, but the Simplified Chinese site will be the first foray into capturing the masses of the Chinese professional population. LinkedIn hopes that this China-focused plan will bring 140 million new professionals onto the service.
The current number of Chinese citizens using the English language site is only 4 million users. The additional hundred-plus million would have a drastic affect on LinkedIn’s overall numbers as they sit at 277 million global member to date. This Chinese push is in conjunction with Sequoia China and CBC and part of LinkedIn’s commitment to create locally relevant products on a global scale.
Additional functionality in the Simple Chinese beta includes the ability for users to integrate Sina and Tencent into 领英 to import Weibo accounts and also the integration with WeChat accounts. Since this is a true beta launch, some advanced functionality like Groups are not available. Additionally, users can switch their language to Simple Chinese today by simply tweaking their account settings.
Image courtesy of LinkedIn.