The National Basketball Association and Tencent Holdings Limited have expanded their partnership that will establish the league's largest international digital partnership in the world's largest nation.
Becoming effective on July 1, the five-year deal encompasses a number of segments. As the exclusive official digital partner of the NBA in China, Tencent will present a record number of live NBA games and deliver enhanced original NBA programming and highlights, including NBA preseason and regular-season games, the All-Star game, the playoffs, including The Finals, NBA Summer League and the NBA Draft through personal computers system and mobile devices. NBA live games and content will be available for fans to access through Tencent’s NBA sections on QQ.com, v.QQ.com, QQ and Mobile QQ, Qzone, Weixin, Tencent Video app, and Tencent News app.
Additionally, Tencent and the NBA will launch the first-ever NBA League Pass offering in China, providing fans with access to a full season of live and on-demand NBA games online and via mobile devices.
Tencent and the NBA will also jointly manage and operate the NBA’s digital assets in China, including the official NBA online destination NBA.com/China and sites for all 30 NBA teams, NBA events and merchandise. Additionally, Tencent will launch the NBA Game Time Application, featuring extensive video highlights, news and statistics, providing fans with the most comprehensive access to the NBA on mobile. Tencent will further assist the NBA in growing its social media presence on Tencent platforms, including Weixin, QQ and Qzone.
The NBA and Tencent will unveil the NBA Community, including an NBA dedicated gaming section within the Tencent Games platform, a more integrated social commerce platform, and a premium subscription service offering registered users special access to NBA content on Tencent. The NBA’s partnership with Tencent will also include the development of NBA-themed interactive games, and the promotion of existing NBA-licensed interactive games, designed for mobile devices and distributed on Tencent’s platforms. Additionally, NBA ID, the league’s loyalty program in China, will be integrated into the NBA Community providing fans the opportunity to earn points for using NBA services and redeem them for special privileges and merchandise.
“The NBA represents both a widely-followed sport and an active healthy way of life in China,” said Tencent president Martin Lau. “This multiyear agreement enables us to bring substantially more NBA games and content to consumers than has ever been available in the past, and we look forward to working with the NBA league, teams and players to further enhance the sport’s profile and popularity.”
Noted NBA commissioner Adam Silver: “NBA fans in China are among the most passionate and knowledgeable basketball fans in the world, and we are thrilled to expand our partnership with Tencent. Tencent is one of the most innovative, leading brands in China, and their extensive reach will give our fans unparalleled access to the league and its teams.”
Silver, in a recent interview, talked about the league's continuing growth in China and its development in India.