Jointly announced on 21 February, domestic fintech giant Ant Group and the NBA league in China have reached a strategic partnership around digital content creation and consumer experience customisation. The move marks the first time that fans in China can access NBA videos on Alipay, the open platform owned by Ant Group.
The NBA is the most favoured professional sports league in China, possessing over 170 million followers on domestic social media platforms. Through the collaboration, the two sides will join forces to develop video content, membership programs, marketing campaigns, digital collectibles and social responsibility initiatives.
To further leverage engagement with local business partners and fan communities, NBA China launched a channel on the Alipay platform on 15 February, featuring a host of user-generated content created by influencers and content creators from both parties.
According to a statement shared with Dao Insights, Ant Group regards this move as important and delightful, “we hope to build a young digital interactive platform for NBA fans in China and bring new interactions in sports in the digital era.”
Commenting on the partnership, NBA China CEO Michael Ma said, “we have a common vision with Ant Group, which is to bring rich and high-quality content services and consumer experience to fans through digital services, blockchain technology and other user-friendly technologies.”
Not to mention that NBA China has also been collaborating with Topnod since last year, Ant Group’s platform for digital collectibles, to provide fans with Spring Festival themed digital collectibles. In the near future, NBA China and Ant Group are expected to integrate more digital engagement initiatives.
This comprehensive strategic cooperation can be considered notably beneficial for both sides in the digital era. For Ant Group, immense fans of NBA can access the exciting NBA video content on Alipay, drawing in more followers for the digital open platform. While NBA China can capitalise on Ant Group’s various technological capabilities to increase digital engagement with fans and partners.