While LinkedIn sits comfortably on its pile of money after this year’s IPO, other companies in the space are challenging its hegemony by targeting markets where LinkedIn is weak.
One such company is Viadeo, sometimes referred to as the ‘French LinkedIn’. It announced at today’s TechCrunch Disrupt in Beijing that it now has 40 million members, and expanding in China after acquiring leading Chinese professional social network Tianji in 2009.
Data released by the company says that while Tianji leads professional social networks in China with more than eight million members and 380,000 registrations each month, the market is ‘still in its infancy’. It expects that number to increase fivefold by the end of 2013.
Dan Sefarty, Viadeo CEO and founder moved to China from San Francisco earlier this year and believes the market is ready to explode.
“We are best positioned to capitalise on the appetite of China for social networks. Indeed, we understand the Internet culture here in China thanks to our Tianji local platform, and take those characteristics into consideration for a social network that caters for the Chinese market,” he said.