According to a Match 19th article in Bloomberg, search engine firm Yahoo! is closing its office in Beijing, which will lead to the loss of 200 to 300 jobs. Local employees have been told that that the company plans to close the office, Yahoo noted in a statement on Wednesday.
Yahoo had close to 12,500 employees globally as of year-end 2014. While the company didn’t say how many jobs would be impacted in China, it employed 200 to 300 people in the Beijing office, according to a Bloomberg source that wishes to remain anonymous. The closing of the office means that Yahoo will no longer have any employees based in mainland China.
More on Yahoo closing China office
“We are constantly making changes to align resources, and to foster better collaboration and innovation across our business,” Yahoo pointed out in its statement. The statement released Wednesday continued to note: “We currently do not offer local product experiences in Beijing but the office has served as a research and development center.”
The announcement of the plan to exit China closes a difficult chapter for the search giant, as the firm encountered a number of problems trying to do business. For example, Yahoo executives came under criticism from human-rights activists and U.S. officials when the firm turned over information to the Chinese government regarding journalist Shi Tao, who was eventually sentenced to 10 years in prison.
Statement from industry analyst
A market research exec was blunt in his assessment of Yahoo’s decision to close its China office. “An R&D facility like this is a huge cost, and for a company as weak as Yahoo is now, it doesn’t make sense,” pointed out Shaun Rein, managing director of China Market Research in Shanghai. “Yahoo doesn’t have significance in China. Yahoo can’t really recruit top people and Chinese firms are not going to advertise on Yahoo.”