FOM announce official Chinese web partner 23 Sep 2004
Formula One and SOHU today (Thursday) launched an official website partnership as China prepares to host the inaugural 2004 Formula 1™ Sinopec Chinese Grand Prix.
SOHU.com Inc. (Nasdaq: SOHU), China's leading online media, communications, commerce and mobile value-added services company, and Formula One Administration, have signed a long-term agreement under which SOHU will exclusively host and manage the Official Formula 1™ website in Chinese, introducing Chinese motor racing fans to the world of Formula One in their own language and offering new business opportunities to Formula One associated companies in this promising market. The official website signing ceremony precedes the inaugural 2004 Formula 1™ Sinopec Chinese Grand Prix, which is scheduled to take place in Shanghai from September 24-26.
The new website (china.formula1.com) will include daily news, official live timing with race commentary, extensive photographic galleries featuring exclusive still TV images, specially-commissioned interviews and features, an interactive results archive, in-depth technical analysis, general information on the rules and history of Formula One and full profiles on all the competing teams and drivers including all previous world champions. The presentation of the new website will follow the creative style of the flagship English language site, formula1.com.
Charles Zhang, Chairman and CEO of SOHU said:
"We are honoured Formula One Management has chosen SOHU as its official online partner in China, as SOHU aims to become the country's preferred online platform for all fans, organisers and corporate advertisers involved in sport. At the same time, as the portal with the widest reach among China's 80 million online users according to iResearch/Alexa for the past eight months, we offer the Formula One community prime internet access to the affluent urban internet users who are the most likely people in China to embrace the world of motor racing."
Bernie Ecclestone, CEO, Formula One Management Limited said:
"The first Formula One Chinese race is a very significant addition to the global Formula One calendar and we are pleased to announce this cooperation at such an appropriate time. For many years tens of millions of Chinese fans have been enjoying Formula One through television, and now millions more will be able to follow Formula One in their own language through the Internet. We are confident that in SOHU we have found a committed partner to help build Formula One's interactive gateway for Chinese fans and to offer a new platform for our teams and sponsors. Additionally, the flagship English language site at formula1.com offers similar opportunities for Chinese companies wishing to enter Formula One."
Victor Koo, President & COO of SOHU said:
"The growth in car ownership reflects the rising prosperity in China and fuels the interest in all automotive related entertainment and sports as higher incomes make people keen to explore new leisure experiences. The inaugural 2004 Formula 1™ Sinopec Chinese Grand Prix is already proving to be very popular and is expected to further enhance interest in the sport, as its glamour and excitement fits well into the new lifestyle of Chinese consumers."
SOHU.COM (NASDAQ: SOHU) is China's premier online brand and indispensable to the daily life of millions of Chinese who use the portal network for their news, search, e-mail, wireless messaging, instant messaging, browsing, games and shopping. SOHU has built one of the most comprehensive matrix of web properties in China, consisting of the mass portal and leading online media destination www.sohu.com; the #1 online alumni club www.chinaren.com; #1 games portal www.17173.com; top real estate website www.focus.cn and wireless value-added services provider www.goodfeel.com.cn . This network of web properties offers the vast SOHU user community the broadest possible choices regarding information, entertainment, communication and commerce. SOHU.COM, established by Dr. Charles Zhang, one of China's Internet pioneers, is in its eighth year of operation.