WWE today announced a deal with Chinese streaming service iQIYI.
In an official press release, it was announced that WWE and iQIYI have reached a deal in which WWE’s flagship programming will be broadcast live in Mandarin starting on September 22. The deal includes episodes of RAW and SmackDown, as well as an on-demand subscription service. As part of the on-demand service, WWE pay-per-views and classic matches will be available. Users with current subscriptions to the iQIYI Sports and boxing packages will gain access to the WWE programming.
Increasing their presence in the region has been something that WWE have been working on for some time. WWE initially brought their PPV programming to Chinese shores in 2016 following a multi-year deal with streaming service PPTV. Along with this, WWE held tryouts in China last summer in the hopes of finding the next Chinese WWE Superstar.
“I have full confidence in this partnership,” said Lingxiao Yu, CEO of iQIYI Sports. “WWE is loved by many fans around the world and has a huge fan base in China.”
iQIYI Sports will be working with WWE to develop interactive content as stated in the press release this morning. As a result of the current climate, interactive viewing is something that WWE has been working on, with the ‘ThunderDome’ set being put into used since SummerSlam.
For more on the deal, you can visit iQIYI Sports’ WWE Channel.