For eBay, It’s About Political Connections in China – Keith Bradsher

1222ebay.jpgFrom The :

’s decision to close its Web site in China and take a 49 percent stake in an venture with a Chinese company is the latest sign that local knowledge and connections matter in the Chinese .

While eBay’s new partner, TOM Online Inc., has suffered a series of commercial setbacks in the last three years, no one questions that knows the Chinese market and has political influence.

TOM Online has been a fairly small, struggling company until now. It earns nearly 90 percent of its revenue from providing cellphone services, mainly sending the latest entertainment and in short text messages or multimedia messages to cellphone users. Most of the rest of its revenue comes from advertising on a Yahoo-like portal that specializes in Chinese entertainment news.[Full Text]

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