Penny Crossland Xing moves into events
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By Penny Crossland

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LinkedIn's largest European rival, German business networking site Xing (http://www.xing.de) is branching out into another strand of the professional networking space. Paidcontent reported a couple of weeks ago (http://digbig.com/5bdddp) that Xing had acquired event registration and ticketing service Amiando. This move will provide more competition to LinkedIn's events offering, which sources listings from organisations such as Eventbrite and Techweb. Although both companies launched their sites in 2003, LinkedIn has soared ahead in terms of membership numbers, which now total more than 85 million worldwide. Xing markets itself as the leading European business networking site and has around 10 million members. However, while LinkedIn is primarily an English language networking site, Xing is available in 16 languages, including Russian, Korean and Japanese. Linkedin, by contrast is available in six languages. The Amianda purchase is Xing's first for two years. In 2008, it acquired Socialmedian Inc, an online news aggregator with an emphasis on sourcing news from social media sources (http://digbig.com/5bdddn). Also in 2008, Xing strengthened its presence in the Turkish market by acquiring Cember, the leading business contact site in Turkey (http://digbig.com/5bdddm). In 2007, the company bought two Spanish networking sites, eConozco (http://digbig.com/5bdddk ) and Neurona (http://digbig.com/5bdddj ), the two largest professional networking sites in Spain. Although LinkedIn launched a German language site in 2009 (http://digbig.com/5bdddh ), Xing is still the networking site of choice for German-speaking professionals. Writing as somebody who regularly needs to find information on individuals' backgrounds, Xing is always part of my search strategy for business people based in continental Europe.

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