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Tencent picks up MLB rights in China

Chinese internet company Tencent has acquired rights for Major League Baseball as part of a broader partnership with the North American league.

The length of the multi-year agreement was not disclosed, but under the terms of the deal, Tencent will stream live coverage of 125 games per season, including the league’s marquee events, such as the All-Star Game and every post-season contest.

Tencent will also show highlights programmes such as MLB Best, MLB Video Clips and a Chinese version of This Week in Baseball. 

The exclusive rights will cover Tencent PC, mobile and OTT platforms.

To activate the agreement, Tencent will show five consecutive days of live games, starting today (Wednesday) with the Los Angeles Angels hosting the Cleveland Indians. From next week, Tencent will provide live coverage on Wednesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays.

As the official digital broadcasting partner of MLB in China, Tencent will also support and show MLB developmental events in an effort to drive the league’s fan engagement in the country.

MLB’s previous partner in China, Le Sports, reportedly ceased operations in China last month following a string of financial problems.