How is all the fuss at Caijing, which has until now been China’s premier business magazine, going to affect Richard Li’s plans for an English news wire?
Mr Li, the son of Asia’s richest tycoon, Li Ka-shing, announced earlier this year that he was planning to partner with Caijing to create Cai Business Indepth.
The idea was that the news wire would use content from Caijing writers, as well as having its own editors and reporters in Hong Kong.
However, the resignation of Hu Shuli, Caijing’s editor, and the subsequent decision of 80pc of her reporters to follow her out of the door, means that whatever Caijing becomes, it will not be the prestigious business title it has been to date. Let’s hope that Mr Li’s deal didn’t cost him too much.
He is putting a brave face on it all, telling Forbes that "preparations are in progress, on course". My mole tells me that the service is going full steam ahead but there are some problems on the technical side. A team of reporters is already in place writing stories, but nothing is being sent out.
There are apparently some questions hanging over the partnership with Caijing, especially as Caijing already translates some of its pieces into English.
Cai Business Indepth also has a partnership with the HK Economic Journal (one of Mr Li’s papers) so the service may come to rely on that more, which would be a shame, because there is, in my opinion, some value in reporting on China from the mainland.
While the wire has a full bureau in Hong Kong, and will shortly have one in Taipei, there’s also no word on mainland bureaus. Perhaps the editors were hoping that Caijing would fill that gap.