Microsoft-owned LinkedIn said it will shut its local version in China by the end of this year as the company faced “challenging operating environment” and “greater compliance requirements” in the world’s second-largest economy.
The world’s largest professional network, which launched its localised version in China in February 2014, will roll out a new standalone jobs application for China – InJobs - later this year.
“We have made the decision to sunset the current localised version of LinkedIn,” senior vice president of engineering at LinkedIn, Mohak Shroff, said in a statement.
“InJobs will not include a social feed or the ability to share posts or articles. We will also continue to work with Chinese businesses to help them create economic opportunity,” said Mr Shroff.
The Asian country is LinkedIn’s third-largest market, according to Statista.
Social media sites like Facebook and Twitter are already banned in the country that has seen the emergence of local champions like Baidu, Weibo and WeChat. Alphabet-owned Google pulled out from China in 2010.
“While we have found success in helping Chinese members find jobs and economic opportunity, we have not found that same level of success in the more social aspects of sharing and staying informed,” said Mr Shroff.
“This decision aligns with our commitment to creating economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce … it feels more important than ever as we all strive to build a global economy that delivers more prosperity and progress to people all over the world.”
Chinese internet regulator directed LinkedIn in March to moderate its content and gave it a 30-day deadline to make the changes, according to a report by US daily Wall Street Journal.
LinkedIn revenue grew nearly 46 per cent annually in the quarter ending on June 30, Microsoft, which acquired LinkedIn in 2016 for $26.2 billion, said. The company did not give a dollar figure for LinkedIn revenue and did not disclose the exact number of users.