Microsoft announced it will shut down the Chinese version of LinkedIn this year, citing a lack of success in helping users employ the professional networking service’s information sharing capabilities.

In a statement yesterday (14 October) LinkedIn explained it faced a challenging operating enviroment and compliance issues in China, where it has been present since 2014.

LinkedIn noted it successfully helped Chinese members “find jobs and economic opportunity”, but had failed to replicate this “in the more social aspects of sharing and staying informed”.

Microsoft plans to replace the service with InJobs, a set-up focused on recruitment but not social features or the ability to post articles.

The US software giant faced growing criticism over apparent censorship of LinkedIn’s Chinese site from domestic politicians and local users.

LinkedIn is the latest big-name western social media service to exit China: other services not offered in the country include Google, Facebook and Twitter.

The company was acquired by Microsoft in 2016 and halted the sign-up process for new Chinese users in August.