Facebook is ready to begin expansion into the Middle East and North Africa and the first step is to open an office in Dubai. Facebook already has 45 million users in that region and they have already seen advertising interest from companies like PepsiCo, Emirates Airlines, and Al Jazeera television.
The office will be run by Facebook's head of global marketing solutions for the Middle East and North Africa, Jonathan Labin. Labin will have only three employees working alongside him to start out.
Jonathan Labin comments on Facebook's expansion into Dubai:
"We already have strong partners in the region that are using Facebook in innovative ways to achieve results,"
"We started working with Emirates in less than three months and they have more than 450,000 engaged fans that are telling about Emirates to the globe,"
"We are building relations for long term and the only way to take it further is to have a local presence,"
Efforts to bring Facebook's networking power to other areas of the World comes just weeks after their initial public offering kicked off with less than stellar investor demand. Facebook and their underwriters are now under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission and other Wall Street Regulators for issues tied to the IPO. Additionally, several lawsuits have already been spawned by some dishonest dealings on Morgan Stanley's behalf, who is the biggest underwriter on the deal.
In the meantime, Facebook's dubai office is up and running and apparently, already drawing revenue driving advertising interest. This may be a good sign for investors who forked over their hard-earned dollars for a piece of the social networking giant. We'll keep you informed as Facebook's efforts to go global continue to evolve.