BEIJING, Sept. 14, 2010 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- ChinaNet Online Holdings, Inc. ("ChinaNet"), (Nasdaq:CNET), a leading full-service media development, and internet technology company for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the People's Republic of China ("China"), today announced that the Company will participate in the 2010 Taipei International Chain and Franchise Autumn Exhibition to be held September 17 - 20 at the World Trade Exhibition Centre in Taipei, Taiwan.

"Our attendance at the Exhibition marks our strategic expansion into Taiwan, and is part of our overall strategy to attract foreign franchises to China through our flagship franchise gateway and marketing platform, 28.com," stated Mr. Handong Cheng, Chairman and CEO of the Company.  "With our rich promotion experience and understanding of the China domestic market, along with new premium services we have added to our product portfolio, including brand management and search engine marketing, ChinaNet will help to facilitate the expansion of Taiwanese franchise enterprises in China."

The Exhibition, hosted by the Taiwan Chain and Franchise Association, is the largest franchise business exhibition in Asia with over two hundred brands in attendance.  ChinaNet has built an Internet media reporting platform on 28.com for the event.  A professional editorial and TV production team will be sent to Taiwan for reporting.

ChinaNet will initially offer a series of premium brand services to franchise owners in Taiwan by adding at least 5 initial customers.

Timing for the expansion was aided in part by the signing of the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA) between mainland China and Taiwan in June, which aims to reduce tariffs and commercial barriers between the two sides. ChinaNet has taken the lead to represent the franchise marketing and promotion business for SME's in Taiwan, and hopes to strengthen the communication between Taiwan and mainland China, promoting the development of both sides and facilitating cross-strait economic cooperation.  The Company will share more detailed plans regarding its expansion into Taiwan later this year.