Mountain View, California-based professional social media platform LinkedIn is planning to set up a joint venture with Sequoia China and China Broadband Capital (CBC) to expand its business in China, according to media reports.
As part of the deal, Sequoia China and CBC will each contribute US$5 million in cash for a 7% stake of the preferred shares of the joint venture. They also have the option to pay US$20 million to expand their stakes to a total of 21% each in the future.
LinkedIn has applied for a license to operate in China, but is still waiting to be approved. The company today has launched a beta version LinkedIn in simplified Chinese.
LinkedIn will also cooperate with local social networking apps Sina Weibo and Tencent Weixin.
Founded in 2002, LinkedIn is a social media site for professionals to network with each other. It currently has more than 259 million registered users.
In China, LinkedIn has more than 4 million members working at nearly 80,000 local and multi-national companies, such as Lenovo, Tencent and Procter & Gamble.
Sequoia Capital is also the early investor of LinkedIn in the U.S. It has invested a series of Chinese internet companies including JD.com, Vipshop and Dianping.com recently.
CBC is founded by former CEO of China Netcom Group, Edward Tian. It has invested many Chinese tech companies including Evernote, CSDN and Yongche.com.