Caixin
Jul 23, 2021 06:02 AM
BUSINESS

IQiyi Wins Streaming Deal With English Premier League

What’s New: Chinese streaming platform iQiyi Inc. struck a broadcast rights deal with the English Premier League, the company said Wednesday.

The deal gives iQiyi exclusive new-media broadcast rights on the Chinese mainland and in Macao for four years of the league’s soccer games starting next month. IQiyi and the English Premier League didn’t disclose the terms of the deal.

When Super Sports Media Inc., iQiyi Sports’ partner, obtained a six-year exclusive deal for broadcast rights from the English Premier League in 2012, it paid $20 million.

The background: Last September, the league terminated a 650 million pound ($861.6 million) agreement with local rights holder PPTV after it stopped paying broadcast fees. The world’s wealthiest soccer league has faced financial turmoil after coronavirus lockdowns forced the suspension of games. China has been its most lucrative emerging market.

IQiyi has been doubling down on sports streaming rights. In addition to the British soccer league, iQiyi also owns the broadcast rights to LaLiga, the Spanish soccer league, the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifiers, the Australian Open, Wimbledon and the PGA Championship.

The video-streaming platform posted better-than-expected first-quarter earnings in May. It more than halved its net loss to 1.27 billion yuan from 2.88 billion yuan a year earlier. The company attributed the robust results to a rise in subscriptions and 12% growth in revenue from membership services compared with the previous quarter.

Quick Takes are condensed versions of China-related stories for fast news you can use. To read the full story in Chinese, click here.

Contact reporter Denise Jia (huijuanjia@caixin.com) and editor Bob Simison (bobsimison@caixin.com)

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