This is very, very beta, but it could be big I think: http://chinese.engadget.com
Late last year I spend some time in China and had a major Starbucks moment. People were lining up to pay US$4 for a cup of coffee even though a lot of white collar folks in China make $500-$1,000 a month. There is an appetite for US products in China, it’s a huge market, but there are ton of issues.
For example, I was told we couldn’t sell advertising in China if we didn’t agree to give editorialthat ain’t gonna happen of course. We’re gonna lose money on this, but I figure it’s a good investment and if it works in China maybe it would work in other languages. So, if you want to work on Engadget Korea or Japan let me know at jason at calacanis dot com.
We had offers to licenses our content of course, but I felt that we should keep ownership of it for now and try to build a global brand which has never really been done in media. Most folks (think MTV, Playboy, etc) just license their brands. The local versions have little to do with the motherships. I prefer the model of our editor Peter Rojas working with my old friend Jason Chiang to create content from the US to China, but more importantly from China to the US. That’s the grand plan at least build a global brand, I’m not sure if it will work to be honest. I know we’re gonna lose a lot of money trying no risk, no reward I guess.
As always I’ll keep you posted I love learning and figuring out this business with all of you in real time. Even the folks who slam me in the comments or on their own blogs are welcome to a certain extent. The folks who slam me the hardest many times have a good points (although they express them in an overly harsh way).
This is beta, so forgive our mistakes (i.e. like not having the email to a friend or comment forms translated yet!).