The impasse over recruitment site ChinaHR, the loss-making subsidiary of US-based Monster (NYSE:MWW), is rumored to be over. Monster has been trying to sell the under-performing ChinaHR since last November, and today several reports in Chinese media suggest that ChinaHR has been sold for a mere US$30 million, entailing the laying-off of half of the Chinese site’s 400 staff.
Monster initially bought a stake in the once-promising ChinaHR in 2005 for $50 million, then increased the stake in 2006, before acquiring the whole company in 2008. At that time, Monster had ploughed in $243 million in total, and ChinaHR was effectively valued at over $300 million. Since then it has been squeezed by major Chinese web companies opening human resources portals, and lost a significant amount of market share.
So far, none of this has been confirmed by Monster, and the intel comes via the CTO of a medical jobs listings site called dxy.cn. His belief is that ChinaHR’s acquisition is a done deal at $30 million with the buyer being the Irish company behind MyJob.ie.
Monster’s failure in the ultra-competitive Chinese web market looks like another cautionary tale of lack of savvy causing a foreign company to be overwhelmed by fast-adapting local rivals. Just like with eBay in China.
(Source: QQ Tech – article in Chinese)