World Wrestling Entertainment (#WWE) might take pride in its pioneering status in the athletic spectacle called sports entertainment, the naming of which is attributed to Chairman/CEO Vince McMahon himself. From a professional wrestling promotion, they have become a multimedia corporation with a global reach and solid following for all their regularly broadcasted events. And their fandom is quite extensive. Last year they began penetrating China and its market with their new Chinese-language event coverage and scouting for local talent to become WWE Superstars. Now, their next big step in the People’s Republic is the launch of their subscription-based streaming service the WWE Network.

Advertisements
Advertisements

This is the latest in a series of new deals with Chinese networks to feature Western media.

Streaming deal

A major announcement was made by the WWE this Thursday, August 9, regarding the brand’s presence in China. The sports entertainment company has inked a partnership with Chinese streaming website #PPTV, which will serve as the local platform to offer subscriptions for video-on-demand across the country. The launch of the WWE Network in China will officially happen on August 18, Friday next week. PPTV is the streaming subsidiary of Nanjing-based #Suning Sports Media, which now has an exclusivity deal in distributing WWE programming for China, including pay-per-view events.

With this arrangement, Chinese fans can now get their fix of the WWE Network through signing up with PPTV, which already carries local streaming rights for the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and the English Premier League.

Advertisements

Suning Sports Media is keen on promoting the WWE on their streaming platform, which will enable Chinese aficionados to watch premier PPV events like “Wrestlemania” and “Summerslam.” The latter is going to be the first major extravaganza on the WWE Network that will be available on PPTV. Its live broadcast on August 21 in the morning (Beijing time) will have Mandarin commentary as well.

WWE show in China

Chinese subscribers of PPTV need only to download the platform’s app into their mobile devices, set-top boxes or smart TVs to enjoy the best that WWE has to offer. They certainly have a lot to look forward to, especially since the pro-wrestling promotion announced that their first live show in China would take place in Shenzhen next month, on September 17. Also, tryouts for Chinese athletes to join the WWE roster continue apace, firmly setting the brand’s footprint in the Chinese mainland.

The WWE Network package on PPTV features not only the most current live show events but also its vast library of classic content from the days of Hulk Hogan, Andre the Giant and much more. With the Chinese deal made with Suning Sports Media, there are now 180 countries all over the world that have access to the WWE Network, which started in the US back in 2014.