Youku strikes licensing deals with Universal, Sony

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Alibaba-owned streaming platform Youku has signed content licensing deals with NBCUniversal and Sony Pictures Television.

Film titles covered by the deals include Sony’s Blade Runner 2049 (pictured) and Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle, while NBCUniversal titles include Jurassic World 2: Fallen Kingdom and Darkest Hour.

The deal also covers major franchises such as Universal’s The Fast And The Furious, Despicable Me and The Mummy movies, along with Resident Evil, Smurfs and Spider-Man from Sony.

NBCUniversal will also work with Youku to produce exclusive entertainment programmes and celebrity interviews.

“By cooperating with NBCUniversal and Sony Pictures Television to show famous Hollywood films on our platform, we can bring richer global content into Alibaba’s entertainment ecosystem,” said Yang Weidong, president of Youku, Alibaba Digital Media and Entertainment Group.

“I am confident that expanding our relationships with more international studios will further enhance our platform’s penetration into the home entertainment business and push the online video and OTT businesses to greater heights.”

Youku reaches 580m devices and claims to have 1.18bn daily video views. The platform is one of China’s leading streaming services along with Baidu-owned iQiyi and Tencent’s QQ.