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  • Writer's pictureDenis Green

China Sports Business Weekly | 22nd April

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

📰 Headlines: G2 Esports most influential overseas team online in China, Migu and Zhibo8 land Coppa Italia rights, China loses East Asian hosting rights, Asian Games faces postponement, MLB announces new China strategy, Kuaishou announces new basketball initiative, new gaming titles get approval, and China to account for one-third of global esports revenues in 2022.


🗞️ Top Industry News

G2 Esports Named Most Influential Overseas Team Online in China The second edition of the Mailman Esports Red Card: China Digital Performance Index assesses the leading overseas esports teams and their performance across China’s dynamic digital ecosystem. It is a guide for industry professionals to understand best practices, identify emerging trends, and make key decisions about digital engagement investment. Read more on SportBusiness (English) and Campaign Asia (Chinese)

💡 Mailman Take: The new gaming license approval by the government opens up further business opportunities and injects positivity into the country’s burgeoning esports industry. Following a record revenue year and an upcoming Asian Games which includes esports titles for the first time, no country is scaling this industry faster than China. 2022 is set up for a blockbuster esports year.


Migu and Zhibo8 Acquire Coppa Italia Rights Chinese streaming platforms Migu and Zhibo8 have acquired rights for the remaining three matches of this season’s Coppa Italia in deals brokered by the China Sports Media agency. The Coppa Italia was not broadcast in China earlier this season, nor in the last three seasons. Read more on SportBusiness (English) and Ecosports (Chinese)

China Relinquishes East Asian Hosting Rights China has been replaced by Japan as hosts of the East Asian Football Championships in July. China had been due to host the East Asian Football Federation's (EAFF) flagship competition for the third time after 2008 and 2015. Japan will now host the event, which features tournaments for both men's and women's teams, from July 19 to 27. Read more on Reuters (English) and People’s Daily (Chinese) Asian Games 2022 Faces 'Possibility' of Postponement, Says Official The Olympic-sized event is scheduled to be held in September in Hangzhou near locked down Shanghai. "No official decision has been taken by the committee until now, but there is a possibility that it will be postponed," said Kuwait's Husain Al-Musallam, director-general of the Olympic Council of Asia. Read more on Firstpost (English)

MLB China Announces New Strategy

MLB China held a media viewing party in Beijing to celebrate the Opening Day of the new season games. At the event, the organisation’s ‘Enjoy the Show’ campaign was introduced, as well as MLB’s upgraded strategy for 2022, which includes developing the domestic baseball market, including the promotion of MLB original content productions, social channel activities, brand events, youth education, CSR projects and cross-border cooperation. Read more on CCTV (Chinese)


Juxing Power to Produce Spanish Football Team Merchandise The Chinese sportswear and merchandise firm announced a deal to produce officially licensed products based on the Spanish national football team, including sweaters, T-shirts, polo shirts, backpacks, mobile phone accessories and stationery, among other products. Read more on SportBusiness (English) and Ecosports (Chinese)

Kuaishou‘s ‘New Generation of Basketball’ Campaign The popular short video platform has launched a new plan to boost content creation regarding basketball, which is called the ‘New Generation of Basketball’. Millions in RMB and prominent exposure will be awarded to the content creators on Kuaishou who participate in the new strategy. Read more on Ecosports (Chinese)

CCTV Releases World Cup 2022 Copyright Statement

CCTV issued a statement indicating that CCTV has exclusive traditional, new media, and sub-licensing rights for the upcoming FIFA World Cup in Qatar for mainland China. Read more on (Chinese)


🎮 Esports New Gaming Titles Approved After Month-Long Freeze China’s National Press and Publication Administration has approved a new batch of 45 games for monetisation, the first such approval since July 2021. The approval indicates a more favorable view from regulators toward the gaming industry after months of headwinds amid regulatory tightening in China across the technology sector. Read more on CNBC (English) and Xinhua (Chinese)

Newzoo: Esports to Generate $1.38B in 2022, China to Account for Third of Global Revenues China will account for almost a third of global esports revenues, whilst Southeast Asia, Central Southern Asia, and Latin America are the fastest-growing markets. There will be 261M esports enthusiasts, who watch at least once a month, by the end of the year. Read more on Game World Observer (English) and Sohu (Chinese)


🗞️ Other News

Forget Short Video, “Medium-Form” Video is China’s Latest Brand Battleground During this year’s winter holiday season, Kuaishou boasted around 50 short drama programs, many of which theoretically could be adapted to longer formats and attract brand sponsors looking to diversify beyond Bilibili or Xigua Video or longer-form platforms like iQiyi or Tencent Video. Read more on Jing Daily (English)


🤔 Opinion Chinese Companies Find Celebrities Are Risky Business China’s ongoing crackdown on celebrity “idolatry” has made a huge dent in marketing practices featuring high-profile popular figures, according to a new study. Read more on Barrons (English)


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Mailman is China’s leading sports digital agency. We exist at the intersection of digital & sports. We help top sports organisations & brands to build sustainable businesses in China, one of the world's most challenging markets. Mailman is part of the Endeavor network. Learn more about our story here.

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