According to the China Internet Network Information Center there are 162 million Internet users in China - a number that has grown by 140 million users in just the past 7 years. 7 million of those users already call Zhanzuo.com, China's largest social network, home.
The Times of London is reporting that Facebook has made an $85 million offer to purchase Zhanzuo.com. The Times reports that Zhanzuo.com CEO Jack Zhang and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg have engaged in talks but that no deal has been completed. Facebook is denying the report.
Facebook's English site already has 100,000 users in China, according to the newspaper. A purchase of Zhanzuo would give Facebook a dominant entry into one of the world's fastest growing Internet markets.
Facebook, however, is denying that they have any intention to acquire Zhanzuo.com -- or any Chinese site, for that matter. Facebook's Director of Communications Brandee Barker told TechCrunch that Facebook has not made any acquisition offers for the site. "No offer has been made and no acquisition in China is being considered by Facebook," said Barker. "And I don't know who the spokeperson [sic] is that they are referring to in the story. The Times never contacted me or my team to confirm the accuracy of this story."