×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

China Reverses Facebook’s Planned Office Opening

The Chinese government appears to have shut down Facebook’s establishment of an office in Hangzhou, almost before it had got off the ground.

The New York Times reported that the company filing documents had been removed from the register of companies on Wednesday. Only two days earlier, photographs of the filing had circulated widely on Chinese social media. Media reports circulated on Tuesday, apparently corroborated by email conversations with the U.S. tech giant. Facebook did not reply to emailed inquiries from Variety.

The New York Times said that the removal of the documents reflected a disagreement between local officials in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province and the Cyberspace Administration of China, with the CAC, apparently, wanting better notification before the U.S. tech giant set up camp behind the so-called great Firewall.

The office had been described by Facebook as an innovation hub,similar to those it operates in other countries in Asia and Europe. The filing had  showed that it was wholly-owned by Facebook Hong Kong, which operates from outside mainland Chinese jurisdiction.

An alternate explanation for the reversal, is that Facebook has been caught up in part of the ongoing trade war between the U.S. and China, which began in earnest a few weeks ago when the White House imposed tariffs on $50 billion of goods imported from China. Thursday also saw the cancellation of the $44 billion proposed takeover of China’s NXP Semiconductor by the U.S.’s Qualcomm, after Chinese regulators failed to approve the deal.

Facebook has had a tough week. Its shares plunged 20%, wiping out $150 billion of valuation on Wednesday, after its reported second quarter revenues missed financial market forecasts.

Facebook’s main social media platform operations are blocked in China. So too is most functionality of the Facebook-owned messaging service Whatsapp. Local companies operating in the social media and messaging space are required to comply with China’s censorship regulations and provide access to regulators through servers located in the country.

More Biz

  • White House Communications Director Hope Hicks,

    House Judiciary Committee Issues Subpoena for Fox Spokeswoman Hope Hicks

    The House Judiciary Committee has issued a subpoena for Hope Hicks, the Fox Corporation communications chief who previously worked as the communications director in President Donald Trump’s White House. The call for Hicks to appear before the committee was issued Tuesday. Hicks could not be reached for immediate comment on the matter. Hicks was in [...]

  • Stephanie Dalton City National Bank

    Why City National Handles Financing for Half the Shows on Broadway

    Seen a Broadway show lately? If the answer is yes, then there’s a pretty good chance that Stephanie Dalton and her team at City National Bank have played a role in the financial life of the production. That can mean anything from managing the cash that a show takes in at the box office to [...]

  • Broadway Theater Placeholder

    The Great Green Way: Inside Broadway's Economic Boom

    Here’s an old Broadway story, probably apocryphal, but with the ring of truth: A worried producer checks in on his ticket sales to see how his show is doing. “We had a terrible night, boss,” the treasurer tells him. “We did one penny.” The producer sulks through Shubert Alley and runs into a rival. “How’s [...]

  • TV Ad Sales Upfronts

    TV's Upfront Market May Be More Complex Than Networks Expected (EXCLUSIVE)

    TV’s “upfront” ad-sales market has started to simmer. What will be required to bring it to full boil? TV networks and media buyers hope to answer that question in coming weeks – if not days. In this annual market for advance commitments to buy commercial time, Madison Avenue and TV sales executives haggle over the [...]

  • Phillip Eubanks and Marc Hemeon Join

    Phillip Eubanks and Marc Hemeon Join Troy Carter’s Q&A

    Q&A, the music and tech company founded by former Lady Gaga manager and Spotify exec Troy Carter, today announced the appointments of Phillip Eubanks as Chief Operating Officer (pictured above, right) and Marc Hemeon as Head of Design (left). The pair join Carter, J. Erving (Human Re Sources, Atom Factory), Suzy Ryoo (Atom Factory, OMD) [...]

  • Aretha Franklin'Clive Davis: The Soundtrack of

    Three Handwritten Wills Found in Aretha Franklin's Home

    While Aretha Franklin was thought to have died without leaving behind a will, earlier this month three documents were discovered by her niece and filed in court earlier this week, according to the Associated Press. Two handwritten wills, dating from 2010, were found in a locked cabinet, and another from 2014 was discovered in a [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content