Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB): Plans to Open Sales Office in China

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Dallas, Texas 05/013/2014 (FINANCIALSTRENDS) –Yesterday, Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) revealed that the company may consider opening a sales office in China to extend more support to local advertisers who use the social media platform to reach out to overseas customers. However, there is no confirmation on how soon Facebook is planning to open sales office in China. Reuters reported that Facebook’s Vice President – Corporate Development, Vaughan Smith talked that the company is exploring ways to extend more support locally but did not comment on really how soon it is planning to open.

The announcement seems to have positive impact on investor sentiment as Facebook’s stock gained over 4.5% during yesterday’s trade and closed at $59.83. However, the stock traded with significantly lower volume of 48.58 million shares against its 30 day average trading volume of 81.20 million shares. The stock has delivered close to 11.40% returns year to date.

Current Scenario:

Bloomberg reported that Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) is in talks to lease space at the Fortune Financial Center in Beijing and it could open a China office within a year. If this goes through, the company will put its employees for the first time inside mainland China, where its services are blocked. However, the company is having its sales office in Hong Kong which is providing support to local advertisers as well as those in mainland China. Hong Kong office employs a staff of around 30-40 professionals.

Bloomberg also reported that in September 2013, Facebook’s COO, Sheryl Sandberg has already met with the government agency in China which oversees internet controls. According to the statement posted on the agency’s website, it is believed that Sheryl discussed about possible role that Facebook may play in helping local companies to expand overseas.

The Asian Focus:

Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) has reported 14% of its total revenue amounting $354 million from Asia during 1Q14. This suggests a significant increase from its revenue of $118 million reported at the time of its IPO in May 2012. The company is now working to boost sales in this region.

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