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Viki Strikes Search Deal With China’s Baidu

HONG KONG – Viki, the TV website, is to power up its activities in China following a partnership with Baidu, the country’s leading search engine provider.

The deal means that Viki will make available for streaming fully-licensed TV shows and movies including those from Turner and Cartoon Network, notably the Steven Spielberg-produced “Falling Skies” (pictured).

Viki, which is notable for the way it engages fans to provide translation and subtitles, is the first global video streaming site to partner with Baidu Video. It also carries shows from the U.K., Taiwan, Korea, Japan and 10 other territories. The content will be available across multiple platforms, including PC and smart mobile devices.

China is the world’s largest video market with 450 million online video viewers, or nearly 80% of its internet-connected population. Netflix , YouTube and other popular streaming sites currently do not have access in China.

Viki, which was a Singapore-based start-up, is now owned by Japanese internet services group Rakuten.

“We’re also opening up Chinese content including dramas, web movies and series to the rest of the world, breaking down barriers between great entertainment and fans everywhere,” said Razmig Hovaghimian, Viki’s CEO and co-founder. It boasts more than 26 million viewers each month, more than 2 billion videos viewed and over 450 million words translated.

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