Facebook quietly building ‘innovation hub’ in China

Google, too, has a similar facility in the country

San Francisco.

Facebook might not be digitally accessible in China, but that’s not stopping it from establishing a physical presence in the country. The company has set up a subsidiary in China to build an “innovation hub” focused on helping local developers and entrepreneurs to innovate and grow.

Facebook’s application for the China subsidiary in the Zhejiang province was approved on July 18, CNBC reported on Tuesday citing a filing with the country’s National Enterprise Credit Information Publicity System.

“We are interested in setting up an innovation hub in Zhejiang to support Chinese developers, innovators and start-ups,” a Facebook spokesperson was quoted as saying.

According to a report in Mashable, the subsidiary is entirely owned by Facebook, meaning it did not have to partner with popular Chinese social media sites Weibo or WeChat to get approval.

Facebook has similar hubs in other countries including India, France and Brazil.

As China strictly censors foreign social media and search engines, Facebook’s website remains banned in the country. Contents from Google and Twitter also remain blocked in the country.

however, Google launched a similar campaign in December with the opening of an artificial intelligence lab in China. It has since released a selection of AI-based apps for the country, including a file management app. However, the search engine and its related sites remain blocked in China.

These strict rules have forced US tech giants to explore new ways to enter the big Chinese market.

Google, which has hundreds of people working in China, recently launched its Artificial Intelligence (AI) lab in the country.

01 Jun 2020, 6:13 AM (GMT)

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