Manchester United has announced a new partnership with China’s Alibaba Group, which will bring exclusive club content to Alibaba’s ecosystem for the first time and extend the club’s engagement with its massive Chinese fan base.
The partnership will see Manchester United content, including selected first-team matches, highlights and localised original productions, available to around 700 million consumers across Alibaba’s platforms.
There will also be a first-of-its-kind, dedicated Manchester United channel on Alibaba’s video-streaming platform, Youku.
The new Manchester United Youku channel will feature Academy, women’s and first-team tour games, plus first-team matches shown on-demand and global and China-specific content. Manchester United has already broadcast three games from our pre-season tour on the Youku homepage.
The partnership will also involve collaborating to create a future Manchester United flagship store, on Tmall, Alibaba’s B2C Marketplace, which will become the official online marketplace store selling Manchester United merchandise to Chinese fans.
Manchester United Group Managing Director, Richard Arnold, comments: “We’re proud of our passionate and loyal following around the world and our Chinese fans are a huge part of that.
“We are always looking for new ways to engage with fans there and this partnership with Alibaba enables them to connect with the club directly through one of China’s most popular video streaming platforms.
“We’re looking forward to working with Alibaba to further grow our fan base in China and building on other areas of the partnership in the near future.”