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  • Writer's pictureDenis Green

China Sports Business Weekly | 10th December

Hello Industry Friends, here are the very latest news and insights from China.

📰 Headlines: IOC states Beijing is ready, Bilibili lands FA Cup rights, China confirmed for men’s Olympic hockey, US announces diplomatic boycott, MLB’s Perfect Pitch to youth, ITF to continue China tournaments, China’s top internet buzzwords.


🗞️ Top Industry News IOC: Beijing is Ready The International Olympic Committee (IOC) said Beijing’s preparations are “very much on track” to host next year’s Winter Olympics, following the latest report from the local organising committee. Beijing 2022 organisers will soon release the second editions of their ‘playbooks’ to manage the Covid risk at the Games. Read more on SportBusiness (English) and Xinhua (Chinese) China’s YouTube Lands English FA Cup Rights Often referred to as the YouTube of China, streaming platform Bilibili has surprised a few by opting to purchase traditional sports rights in the shape of the English FA Cup. Bilibili is best known for its three-year exclusive deal for the League of Legends World Championships, worth $110M. Read more on SportBusiness (English) and (Chinese) 💡 Mailman Take: We don’t expect Bilibili to become a serious player in traditional media sports rights space given its focus on esports. Bilibili is however a platform rights holders should be considering providing content for, given its focus on the younger generations with increasing disposable income.

China’s Men Confirmed for Olympics Hockey The International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) confirmed China will keep its place in the men’s Olympic ice hockey tournament, despite concerns over the standard of the team. Read more on InsideTheGames (English) and Xinhua (Chinese) The US Announces Winter Olympics Diplomatic Boycott, Others Follow No official delegation from the US, Canada, UK or Australia will be sent to the Games. That said, all nations have confirmed their athletes could attend and would have the government's full support. Read more on SportBusiness (English) and Global Times (Chinese)

50K Fans Celebrate MLB’s Perfect Pitch in Guangzhou Major League Baseball’s (MLB) two-day event featured a combination of baseball, graffiti art, and live music. MLB has a clear strategy of targeting youth across China, with their Guangzhou event a positive sign of their growing popularity across the younger generations. Read more on CRI (Chinese) 💡 Mailman Take: Attaching a new generation of young fans is what all global sports organisations are vying for in China. MLB has proven here that bringing in aspects of music, art, and sport works wonders with China’s youth.

ITF Won’t Suspend China Tournaments The governing body of tennis backed up its decision to continue tournaments in the world’s most populous country by saying it "does not want to punish a billion people", following the decision from the WTA to suspend tournaments in China. Read more on BBC (English) China Launches Crackdown Campaign on Olympic IP Infringement China is clamping down on any unauthorised use of the Olympics logo or athlete names as part of a campaign that began in October and will last till next June. Read more on Reuters (English) and Xinhua (Chinese)

Zhao Xintong Claims UK Championship Title China’s new snooker star has been hailed as a future world champion after he beat Luca Brecel 10-5 to clinch snooker’s UK Championship crown. Read more on SCMP (English) and Xinhua (Chinese)


🎮 Esports

Esports Blast: November Catch up with the biggest stories from China’s esports world from November, including Weibo acquiring Suning Gaming, EDG partnering with Pop Mart, and Huya signing with ESL Gaming. Read more here (English) What EDG’s Worlds 2021 Championship Win Means for China's Esports Industry China’s League of Legends community celebrated EDG’s victory to the same scale as China winning gold in an Olympic event. Eddie Chen takes a look at five key points on how this win will impact China’s esports ecosystem. Read the blog (English)


🤔 Opinion

Five Things to Know About Marketing To China’s Gen-Z

If there is one group that seems to hold the keys to the promised land of Chinese consumerism, it is the “post-95s”. Zi Wang explores more (English)


🗞️ Other news

China’s Top Buzzwords and Internet Slang of 2021 Two year-end lists of popular slang words and internet catchphrases were published this week. The words offer a glimpse into what’s on the minds of Chinese internet users and Chinese government officials. Here are all 16 words on the lists (English) Weibo Bans Profane Words in Usernames The ban on profane words in Weibo usernames aims to improve the Chinese cyberspace environment and promote civility online. Read more on Radii China (English)


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Headquartered in Shanghai, China, Mailman is a global sports digital consultancy and agency. We help the world’s leading sports organisations serve their audiences and build their businesses. With over 200 experts across China, Southeast Asia, Europe, and the US, we specialise in digital strategy, transformation, social media, content production and eCommerce. Mailman is part of 160over90, an Endeavor company. Learn more about our story here.

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