×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

ESPN Scores Strategic Agreement With China’s Tencent

ESPN, the sports arm of Disney, has struck a major strategic deal with online giant Tencent. The agreement will see ESPN content localized and exclusively distributed in China via Tencent’s digital platforms.

The two companies will also collaborate on content for Tencent’s media platforms, which include QQ and WeChat (Weixin).

Tencent’s live sports coverage and digital products in China will feature exclusive Mandarin-language ESPN content — a combination of original and localized content. It is initially focused on NBA basketball and international soccer, and includes the potential to expand to other sports over the course of the agreement.

Tencent’s QQ Sports portal, will launch an ESPN section, helping ESPN establish its most significant digital presence ever in China. ESPN’s content will also be integrated across other QQ.com channels and sections.

ESPN will provide original Mandarin stories focused on the NBA and international soccer, as well as deliver a selection of its English-language NBA and soccer information and video to be translated and published on QQ Sports.

Beginning with the 2016 NBA Playoffs, ESPN experts will be on-site at five games per week to provide exclusive, live Chinese-language analysis as part of Tencent’s NBA coverage. ESPN will also provide a weekly NBA opinion and debate program for Tencent users.

Tencent will also license from ESPN the exclusive, live digital rights in mainland China to the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship Tournament (aka “March Madness”,) more than 100 regular season college basketball games and the X Games.

“Tencent boasts a huge pool of users. Every day, hundreds of millions of people watch streamed sports games and read sports news on Tencent,” said SY Lau, senior executive VP of Tencent and president of its Online Media Group.

“This relationship with ESPN will accelerate Tencent’s development as a comprehensive and professional digital platform and set benchmarks for the Chinese sports media sector.” “After years of evolution, China’s sports media is now at a crossroads and is ready to transform its traditional way of development. The collaboration between Tencent and ESPN will open an era of customization and innovation in China’s sports media sector,” said Sam Xie Yuefeng, GM of marketing and business development at Tencent Sports.

“This agreement will help us serve millions of Chinese fans and bring our coverage of basketball, international soccer and other sports to them like never before,” saidRussell Wolff, executive VP, ESPN International.

More Biz

  • Felicity Huffman

    Felicity Huffman Reports to Federal Prison to Serve Two-Week Sentence

    Felicity Huffman reported to federal prison in Dublin, Calif., on Tuesday morning to begin her two-week sentence for paying to cheat on her daughter’s SAT test. Huffman pleaded guilty to one count of fraud, admitting that she paid $15,000 to consultant Rick Singer to boost her daughter’s SAT score. Judge Idira Talwani sentenced her last [...]

  • Sallie Krawcheck

    Sallie Krawcheck's Ellevest Launches Women-Focused Impact Investment Platform

    Ellevest, the female-focused investment platform headed by Sallie Krawcheck, has launched an impact investment fund that will court high-net-worth women in entertainment and other sectors who want to tailor their stock portfolios to favor companies with good track records on a range of social concerns. Krawcheck, who was one of the highest-ranking women on Wall [...]

  • LeEco founder Jia Yueting

    LeEco Founder Jia Yueting Files for Bankruptcy in the U.S.

    Jia Yueting, the colorful Chinese entrepreneur who founded the LeEco electronics-to-video streaming group, has filed for bankruptcy in the U.S. Jia, sometimes known as YT, has debts on both sides of the Pacific and has been in the U.S. from late 2017, in defiance of an order from the China Securities Regulatory Commission to return [...]

  • Lakers NBA China Criticism

    From the NBA to 'South Park,' China Refuses to Play Ball With Its Critics

    The Oct. 12 game between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Brooklyn Nets in the Chinese city of Shenzhen might have seemed like business as usual, with thousands of basketball fans out in force for the rare opportunity to see their beloved NBA teams compete live. But below the surface, tensions were high at the [...]

  • Whitney Houston Chris Cornell Notorious Big

    Whitney Houston, Soundgarden, Notorious B.I.G., More Nominated for Rock Hall of Fame

    Nominees for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s Class of 2020 were announced Tuesday morning: The lineup comprises Pat Benatar, Depeche Mode, the Doobie Brothers, Whitney Houston, Judas Priest, Kraftwerk, Dave Matthews Band, MC5, Motorhead, Nine Inch Nails, the Notorious B.I.G., Rufus featuring Chaka Khan, Todd Rundgren, Soundgarden, T. Rex and Thin Lizzy. The [...]

  • Help Wanted: Amazon Studios International Execs

    Help Wanted: Amazon Studios International Execs Talk European Expansion

    If there’s a perfect example of Amazon Studios’ strategy with its local-language international TV content, Japan’s “Documental” would be it. The series revolves around 10 comedians who battle to make one another laugh in an elimination-style competition. James Farrell, Amazon Studios’ head of international originals, said it was a good example of an unconventional idea [...]

  • CENTRAL PARK FIVE

    Netflix and Ava DuVernay Sued by Police Interrogation Firm

    The company behind a controversial police interrogation technique filed a federal lawsuit on Monday against Netflix and director Ava DuVernay, claiming that it was defamed in DuVernay’s miniseries on the Central Park jogger case. John E. Reid and Associates developed the Reid Technique in the late 1940s, and it has continued to offer training materials [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content