WWE Extends Online Deal in China

WWE Smackdown Still - Publicity - H 2018
Courtesy of USA Network

The multi-year partnership will bring the wrestling brand's flagship events, such as WrestleMania, Raw and SmackDown, to Chinese fans in the local Mandarin language.

WWE and China's PP Sports have inked a new multi-year deal to continue airing the wresting brand's live weekly programming online in Mandarin across China.

PP Sports has been the WWE's exclusive digital partner in China for the past three years, delivering more than 300 episodes of WWE programming to the country.

Under the terms of the new pact, PP Sports will continue to offer WWE Network as a subscription video-on-demand service in China, featuring all of the brand's flagship monthly pay-per-view events, including WrestleMania, Raw and SmackDown. PP Sports will also leverage its co-managed sports channels on other popular Chinese streaming platforms, such as Alibaba's Youku and Migu.

Terms of the deal, as well as its duration, were not disclosed. 

"By providing exciting content through localized and targeted promotions, we have seen tremendous growth of WWE fans throughout the country,” said Dongmao Ge, deputy GM of PP Sports. “Our vision is to reach and engage with more fans with WWE’s family-friendly entertainment programming, so we are excited to extend this partnership.”

“PP Sports has been a valued partner that has helped us grow WWE’s passionate fanbase in China,” added Jay Li, WWE's vp and GM for Greater China. “We are pleased to renew our partnership and look forward to continuing to provide WWE’s unique blend of action-packed, family-friendly entertainment.”

In addition to broadcasting its content in China, WWE is actively recruiting athletes and wrestling performers in the country. The next WWE tryout will take place in Shanghai from July 15-18, featuring up to 50 male and female athletes showcasing their abilities with the goal of being selected to train at the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida.

The WWE is also planning its fourth consecutive annual live event in China at the Mercedes-Benz Arena on Saturday, Sept. 21. WWE stars competing at the WWE Live Shanghai event include Roman Reigns, Kofi Kingston, Charlotte Flair, Asuka, Finn Bálor, Xavier Woods, the IIconics, Shinsuke Nakamura and Kevin Owens, as well as Chinese talent such as Xia Li and Boa, who are currently training at the WWE Performance Center.