Alibaba Group company, UCWeb has obtained the media rights to use short videos of CCTV 2018 World Cup broadcasts, highlights and related video content.
This is the second Alibaba Group company that has acquired the World Cup media rights from CCTV after Youku obtained the live streaming rights to all 64 games from CCTV.
Apart from these two companies, the only other company in China to obtain rights to stream the World Cup from CCTV is China Mobile’s MIGU. In addition, Hisense was granted the OTT rights to broadcast the World Cup for its users in China.
UCWeb’s main product was the UC Browser which was created in 2004 and enabled mobile phone users to use web browser on their phones at that time. Now the company’s focus has changed to a news/stories platform that is supported by big data technology to provide specifically selected news/stories to users on the basis of their preferences. The platform is called UC Toutiao (UC Headline) and mainly functions as a mobile app. Users can read the news and view short videos. UC Browser was upgraded to UC in 2016 and started to develop towards a big data new media platform.
The platform says they have 600m users and the head of UC domestic business, Wu Jia, says that acquiring the video rights to the 2018 World Cup is very important. They will integrate the content with other content from Alibaba’s culture and entertainment sectors, bringing the latest match highlights and contents to UC users.
UC already reports, streams and plays sports videos, including the European football leagues and NBA.
Proofread by Raymond Fitzpatrick