2008.04.03

QQ.com to be Exclusive Internet Service Sponsor for 2010 World Exposition

The Internet will be introduced as a tool of modern civilization for the first time in the 150-year old World Exposition. On April 3 2008 the Bureau of the Shanghai World Expo Coordination signed on Tencent China's largest Internet enterprise as the 2010 Shanghai World Expo's exclusive Internet service sponsor.

Tencent to Operate Online World Expo

As the exclusive Internet service sponsor for the 2010 Shanghai World Expo Tencent will take care of all the Expo's online needs which will include running maintaining and developing the contents of the 2010 Expo's official website.

As one of the two major innovations of 2010 Shanghai World Expo the Online World Expo will cover four main functions which are topic introduction guided tours education and exhibition. The Online World Expo will feature three kinds of online pavilions which are devoted to topic browsing immersive experience and inspiring creativity. The Online World Expo platform browsing pavilions and creativity pavilions will be built by the Expo organizers. The experience-focused pavilions will be built by Expo participants. The Online World Expo can allow Internet users from all over the world especially those who will not be able to attend the actual event to experience the best of the Shanghai World Expo. Expo participants can also show themselves off to a wider audience.

Tencent Chairman and CEO Mr. Ma Huateng points out that the Online World Expo is a historical opportunity for China's Internet enterprises to show China's strength to the world. To allow Internet users from all over the world to fully experience the Shanghai World Expo Tencent promises to use the most advanced technology and talented human resources to operate the Online World Expo which will make the Shanghai World Expo into a permanent World Expo online。

In addition to the overall operation of the Online World Expo services provided by Tencent for the World Expo will also include the facilitation of the World Expo online interactive platform e-commerce platform virtual communities World Expo-related value added online applications and services online promotion of the World Expo helping Shanghai World Expo partners' World Expo-related online promotions.

Bureau of the Shanghai World Expo Coordination Chief Mr. Hong Hao indicates that in the Expo's 150-year history the World Expo has always been carried out in actual pavilions. Shanghai World Expo will use the Internet's distinctive advantage in broadcasting and flexible formats to feature an "Online World Expo." Tencent's participation in the Online World Expo project will help World Expo organizers realize the goal of a "successful exciting and unforgettable" World Expo.

Tencent's Online World Expo Advertising Rights

A highlight of Tencent's becoming the World Expo's exclusive Internet service sponsor is that in addition to having the rights to use the World Expo's logo signs and slogan the World Expo has also granted many advertising rights to Tencent. The World Expo's other exclusive sponsors and sponsors of various levels can only use Tencent for any online promotional activities that use or mention the World Expo logo or events. The Shanghai World Expo market development plan have commenced on March of 2007. World Expo global partners so far include China Eastern Airline China Mobile China Telecom Bank of Communications Saic Motor General Motors Siemens Coca Cola People's Insurance Company of China State Grid Baosteel etc.

Industry analysts believe that the World Expo is very clear about the terms and conditions required of exclusive sponsors to be an exclusive sponsor. To protect sponsors and maintain a fair market World Expo contracts eliminate any opportunity for hidden profits.

According to Tencent's 2007 annual financial report the number of registered Tencent QQ users at the end of 2007 was close to 700 million of which more than 300 million were active users. Tencent's online advertising revenue has maintained a fantastic growth of more than 80%. As a World Expo sponsor Tencent will not only use its clout to get more Chinese Internet users to care about and participate in the World Expo but will also build a new online interactive platform. Tencent hopes to build a smoother communication channel for those enterprises and users who want to acquire profits and business opportunities from the World Expo.

CCID Consulting Internet and E-Commerce Produce Research Center Vice General Manager Mr. He Xiao believes that Tencent's becoming the World Expo's exclusive Internet service sponsor means a lot for the company's future. Firstly Tencent's sponsoring of the World Expo is similar to Sohu's sponsoring of the Olympic Games. Both companies are using international events to elevate their own brand recognition especially global brand recognition. After many years' effort Tencent has gone from an industrial value-enhancing to a social value-enhancing enterprise a bottleneck that China's Internet enterprises must overcome in order to become a world-known Internet enterprise. While Tencent is helping China understand the whole world better the company is also helping the whole world understand China as well as Tencent better. Tencent's cooperation with the World Expo will also help Tencent shed its overly entertainment-focused feel and allow Tencent users and all Internet users to experience Tencent's high-end service capabilities and versatility. This will help Tencent improve its image and adjust to a new user base as Tencent expands into new markets through cooperation with the World Expo.

Tencent's Plan: Using the Shanghai World Expo to Shine as a Major Media Outlet

Tencent has revealed that sponsoring the Shanghai World Expo will be the largest investment Tencent has ever made. Tencent's plan is very obvious: Using the immense influence of the Shanghai World Expo to become a major media outlet.

The more than 70 million people who are expected attend the Shanghai 2010 World Expo will likely break the record of the number of people attending the World Expo in the event's history. In addition to direct and indirect revenues the benefits conferred by the World Expo will include incalculable and sustained social benefits. For historical example 1970 World Expo in Osaka Japan formed an economic sphere around Osaka that continued to grow rapidly in the 10 years after the World Expo which benefited Japan's overall economic growth. With Shanghai's location at the mouth of the Yangtze River the World Expo will surely have a ripple effect on East China's economic development. The immense value of this ripple effect will be hard to overestimate.

As the World Expo's exclusive Internet service sponsor QQ.com will have prior media rights to coverage of important World Expo events such as authorized online videos pictures and contents of the World Expo opening and closing ceremonies and events planned for the Chinese Pavilion Day etc. Tencent will be the World Expo's strongest information platform. Tencent will no doubt produce an impact on other heavy players in the industry.

Tencent Executive Vice President Lau Seng Yee points out that Tencent has been strengthening its media wing in the last few years. Tencent has already worked with international organizations and events such as the International Basketball League and Women's World Cup. Tencent's role as a partner of the annual Boao Forum for Asia further increased Tencent's international recognition. Tencent's reporting of the 2008 Two Conferences (National People's Congress and the Chinese Political Consultative Conference) and Tencent's reporting strategy of the Olympic Games have showcased the company's powerful interactive platform. Being a Shanghai World Expo partner is a historical opportunity for Tencent to realize a fundamental change in the company's scale and direction.