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SBD Global/August 23, 2017/Finance

Chinese Super League Plans Foray Into Online Football Games

The Chinese Super League signed a deal with a local developer to produce online football games "in its first foray into gaming as it searches for new sources of revenue," according to Li & Goh of REUTERS. The CSL signed a six-year partnership with Beijing-based developer Crazy Sports to develop football-related games "based on 16 CSL teams and the league" through '22. CSL clubs have recruited "global stars" such as Carlos Tevez, Oscar and Hulk in recent months. In June, EA "poured cold water on rumors" that the CSL would be featured in FIFA 18. Crazy Sports said that the CSL deal, which would give it non-exclusive rights, was worth more than 100M yuan ($15M). Crazy Sports CEO Peng Xitao said that the streaming revenue from the CSL-themed games could reach 1B yuan ($150.2M) in '20. The games' content will be made accessible to overseas gamers "through European gaming partners From the Bench and Soccer Manager." Crazy Sports, which also previously ran an online lottery platform, said that it "hoped to convert its over 100 million sports lottery users to play the CSL games" (REUTERS, 8/22).
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