?️ Top Industry News

China’s Sports Industry Value Falls 7.2%
The figures released by the National Bureau of Statistics signal a slowdown in growth while hampering the government’s ambitious target of growing the total value to $790B by 2025. The National Statistics Bureau reported at the end of December that the total value of all sports goods and services produced in the country was $430B for 2020, down from $463B in 2019. Read more on SportBusiness (English) and People’s Daily (Chinese)

Beijing’s Olympic Bubble Starts Operation
The biosecure bubble is now in place with less than a month to go until the start of the Winter Olympics. The closed-loop system allows overseas athletes and official country members to enter China without quarantine in order to take part in the Games. It’s compulsory for all to stay in the bubble for 21 days without showing symptoms before being allowed to move around. Read more on SportBusiness (English) and Reference News (Chinese)

Anta Gains on Western Rivals in China
Anta cited “guochao,” as a main advantage. Guochao is a Chinese term meaning “national trend,” which is making domestic brands more popular. Anta generated record revenue of $3.5B for the six months ending June 30, up 56% year-over-year. Puma and adidas reported a 15% sales decline in China in Q3 2021, while Nike saw sales fall 20% in the country in fiscal Q2. Read more on FOS (English)

? Mailman Take: Anta is set for a big Olympics with the IOC sporting Anta apparel, as the brand is the committee’s official uniform supplier. There’s no signs of Anta, as well as other popular local brands such as Li-Ning, slowing down over the next few years. Patriotism is as strong as it’s ever been, and a home Olympics will only accelerate that.

China Bans Tattoos for National Footballers
The country’s sports administration body said recruiting new players with tattoos at national level and to youth squads was “strictly prohibited”. The administration said the move would help set a “good example for society”. Read more on BBC (English) and Sina (Chinese)

MLB Develops Chinese Baseball Animation “Strike!”

Partnering with Heart & Soul Animation, MLB’s “Strike!” tells the story of baseball player He Nai. The narrative follows the ups and downs in Nai’s life, culminating in a prosperous baseball journey. Read more on Sohu (Chinese)

FIS President: China Can Take Winter Sports to “Next Level”
International Ski Federation (FIS) President Johan Eliasch claims China can elevate winter sports to the “next level” as the country prepares to host the Winter Olympics. Eliasch highlighted the importance of China to strengthen the “global presence” of snow sports. Read more on Inside the Games (English) and CRI (Chinese)

Jisheng Gao Sells Southampton Stake
The Chinese businessman has sold his shareholding in the Premier League club to sport and entertainment investment firm Sport Republic, in a deal worth a reported $134.5M. Read more on SportsPro (English) and Lanxiong Sports (Chinese)

Liaoning Province Applies to Host National Winter Games 2027
According to the application document, Liaoning Province plans to host the opening and closing ceremonies, and ice sports programs, while Fushun will organise the sports events. Read more on EcoSports (Chinese)

? Esports

14K Gaming-related Companies Shut Down Amid License Freeze
The shutdowns have come off the back of the National Press and Publication Administration (NPPA), which is in charge of licensing video games in China, having not published a list of approved new titles since the end of July. Read more on SCMP (English) and Securities Times (Chinese)

? Opinion

China’s Top 5 Crackdowns in 2021
In what was a year littered with crackdowns and new policies, Jing Daily takes a look at the top 5, namely: big tech, celebrity & fan economy, gaming, and wealth flaunting. Read more on Jing Daily (English)

?️ Other news

Douyin Releases 2021 Data Report
Key takeaways from the report include: old songs become the new, folk art hosts in the money, rural themes get big likes, app view duration decreases. Read more on Pandaily (English) and Douyin (Chinese)

Shanghai Doubles Down on Metaverse
A development plan released by Shanghai contained the first mention of the metaverse, which is one of four pillars for exploration, the Shanghai Municipal Commission of Economy and Information Technology said in its five-year plan for developing the electronic information industry. Read more on CNBC (English) and Wenhui Daily (Chinese)

China Launches 5G High-speed Train for Winter Olympics

A world-first, the express train will link the two competition zones of Beijing and Zhangjiakou, allowing athletes, journalists and other attendees to move between venues. A live-streaming studio has been set up on the high-speed railway line with 5G signal towers situated along the route. Read more on Inside the Games (English) and Science and Technology Daily (Chinese)

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