The partnership involves M2B making available a WOWtv site customized for China for streaming free and legal video content from M2B’s infrastructure. Baidu, in turn, will drive internet traffic to the Chinese WOWtv site upon its launch.
Broadband media entertainment company Amaru says its subsidiary M2B World Asia Pacific (M2B) has entered into a strategic agreement with Beijing Baidu Netcom Science and Technology, a wholly owned subsidiary of Baidu.com, Inc., a leading Chinese language internet search provider.
The company believes that the partnership will enable M2B to expand its worldwide viewership and generate additional advertising revenue by tapping into the fast growing online video and advertising markets in China.
A couple of months ago, the company had informed that WOWTV Global site will offer viewers a selection of free and premium TV shows and movies for online video streaming via broadband internet access. Launched by M2B, it’ll provide worldwide access to its library of licensed online video content. (Read: Watching Web TV on WOWTV)
About the China market potential, Amaru says that according to a 2008 report by the China Internet Network Information Center, there are about 180 million online video users in mainland China.
Of late, Baidu has taken a number of initiatives to expand its business. In a similar arrangement last year, it entered into agreements with UiTV, a leading operator of Internet television platform in China. Under these agreements, Baidu will contribute assets related to the operation of Baidu Internet TV Channel to UiTV in exchange for an 8.3% stake in UiTV and US$15 million. (Read: Baidu, UiTV Decide to Collaborate)
It’s a leading search property in the Asia-Pacific region, according to data from web market research company comScore. (Read: Google, Chinese Search Engine Baidu at Top in AP)
Baidu also decide to introduce its online C2C platform, called “Baidu Youa.” It is an online shopping system through which merchants can sell their products and services at Baidu-registered stores. (Read: Baidu Goes from Search to Commerce)
And last month, it had decided to enter a strategic partnership arrangement with China Telecom Corporation. It’ll provide wireless search for China Telecom’s 3G mobile phone subscribers. (Read: Baidu Offering Wireless Search in China)
M2B will offer Baidu.com’s search engine users a range of online movies, TV series, and variety shows via video-on-demand streaming on the Chinese version of WOWtv. Users can watch WOWtv’s programs like travel series Estelle’s Paradise, fashion videos from Video Fashion Network, Thai movies, and Chinese short films. All the content on the Chinese language site will be made available with Mandarin subtitles.
The Chinese version of WOWtv was launched on May 15, 2009.