In an effort to help local businesses find customers in China and East Asia and to attract more investment to Bellevue and the region, the city has launched a bilingual e-zine focused on stories of high-tech innovations.
The site, BellevueCN, features companies with ties to technology and trade. It will also include interviews with leaders in government and business who promote trade between Washington and Asia. The inaugural cover story is an interview with Gary Locke, U.S. Ambassador to China.
"Chinese companies are looking at Bellevue as a location for their offices in the U.S. Investors of all types are looking here, too," Mayor Conrad Lee said during a reception Wednesday hosted by the Seattle Entrepreneurship Club, which celebrated BellevueCN's launch. "This website helps reinforce our argument for why that's a good idea."
Speakers at the reception at City Hall included executives from Microsoft, Google, iSoftStone, AdSage and Baidu. Zhan Wang of Baidu, China's leading search engine, gave his views of the future of the search engine market in the U.S. and China.
BellevueCN is interactive, with science and technology leaders here and in China invited to post articles and profiles on it, in English and Chinese, at no cost. Comments and questions can be posted, which will be translated and moderated to generate more dialogue. The content will be translated and broadcast through social media and news channels on the west coast and in Asia. Other languages may be added in the future.
The e-zine was developed by the City of Bellevue in partnership with iSoftStone, a China-based IT services provider with a large employment base on the Eastside. The University of Washington developed the key words, marketing strategy and social media strategy for China.
"Bellevue is promoting economic cooperation and cultural exchange," iSoftStone Vice President Weiling Li said. "BellevueCN will further help to bring people together from both sides of the Pacific."
Sponsors include Microsoft CHIME (Chinese Microsoft Employees), the Washington Technology Industry Association, the Washington State China Relations Council, the Trade Development Alliance of Greater Seattle, the State of Washington, the Port of Seattle, the Hong Kong Association of Washington and Baetz/Lamka/Clark.
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