China's SINA announces internet rights to EPL

China internet pioneer SINA Corporation has announced it has picked up the online broadcasting rights for China to English Premier League and Italian Serie A football . Commencing 11 August, , SINA’s broadband service will carry live, online coverage of all 1,140 EPL matches for the next three seasons until 2010. Web users will be able to subscribe on an annual, monthly and per-game basis at Rmb380 ($50), Rmb38 ($5) and Rmb3.8 ($0.5), respectively. In addition, SINA Sport Channel will also feature replays of the most exciting action plays on a free-of-charge basis. The matches can also be viewed on pay TV in China, starting from tomorrow. Separately, SINA has also obtained the rights to provide live, online broadcast of the professional Italian football league Serie A in China.

"We are delighted to be chosen the only online portal in China to offer live broadcasting of both the English Premier League and the Italian Serie A," said Tong Chen, the executive VP and chief editor of SINA Corporation. "These two deals are not only a perfect complement to our already strong offering of domestic and international sports events, but also reaffirm SINA’s position as a preeminent online sports broadcaster in China. Leveraging our unique advantages as a leading online portal and our first-class video streaming technology, SINA is able to provide Chinese soccer fans with enhanced multimedia experiences, integrating comprehensive sports news coverage, timely commentaries and interactive sports communities.”