PP Sports, a Chinese digital sports media company, has secured the local media rights to the Bundesliga, the top tier of German soccer, from this season.
The deal between PP Sports and the Bundesliga sees the company secure exclusive linear and digital rights to the league’s fixtures broadcast on the Chinese mainland for the next five years, until the conclusion of the 2022/23 season. The deal marks the first time that German soccer has given its exclusive rights to a digital media firm in China.
The Suning Group subsidiary will also share the rights to produce documentaries and other Bundesliga content, alongside China Central Television (CCTV).
As part of the deal, PP Sports’ subscriber members will also be the first to have the opportunity to purchase Bundesliga-authorised products. PP Sports will also offer activities for fans, including competitions to give away match tickets.
The Bundesliga is also considering working with Suning, which also own Italian soccer club Inter Milan, on youth training in the region.
Zeng Gang, executive vice-president of PP Sports, said: “The Budesliga has a very strong fanbase in China, and we will take full advantage of PP Sports' video and content expertise and the offline advantages of our parent company, Suning Commerce Group, to push the league's development here to new heights.”
Robert Klein, chief executive of Bundesliga International, added: “With a long history of broadcasting of the Bundesliga over 20 years extensively across China, particularly through national television broadcaster CCTV, China has always been one of our biggest fanbases outside of Germany.
“With interest in world-class international football growing rapidly here, we are pleased to have a partnership with PP Sports that will not only further enhance our coverage by reaching and serving Bundesliga fans around the clock, but also help to further grow interest in football in China.”