Alibaba Group’s expansion into non-e-commerce businesses such as movies and music took another step today as the group announced the establishment of a sports company, aiming to “transform China’s sports industry through Internet-enabled technologies.”
The company, named Alibaba Sports Group, will be majority owned by Alibaba Group but has backing from Sina Corp., owner of China’s popular microblogging site Sina Weibo, and Yunfeng Capital, a private equity company founded by Alibaba Executive Chairman Jack Ma.
Alibaba Sports Group will engage in sports media, events, ticketing and other aspects of the industry, leveraging Alibaba Group’s extensive e-commerce, digital entertainment, marketing, cloud computing and other Internet properties, according to an Alibaba press release.
Alibaba’s Group’s chief executive officer Daniel Zhang was named chairman of Alibaba Sports. Zhang Dazhong, a veteran of China’s new media and sports industry and a former vice president of Shanghai Media Group, will serve as CEO.