National Legal and Policy Center (NLPC) started running social media ads targeting LeBron James + NBA in its Freedom4China campaign. NLPC spokesman Tom Anderson said, “LeBron James and the NBA can’t have it both ways. They can’t be outspoken about social justice in this country, and silent about human rights abuses in China. Nor can they pretend what happens in China is none of their business. The NBA is business partners w/ Chinese Communist Party.”
Nike owns 80%+ of basketball market + pitchman LeBron James has lifetime contract valued @ $1 billion. James often travels to #China for camps, clinics, engagements. In 2018, Nike’s China revenue was $6.2 billion, up 21% compared to just 7% growth in North America.
The NBA has 12+ media partnerships + licensing agreements in China, including a US$500 million pact w/Tencent. Subscribers to Tencent Sports app can watch live broadcasts of basketball championship series for US$3–10/month.
Tencent is both internet+ entertainment giant in China… and Tencent is a 40% owner of Fortnite, which made $2.4 billion in 2019, owns WeChat + funded Reddit, Inc. $150M. Tencent’s owner, Ma Huateng, is worth US$55 Billion, deputy to 5th Shenzhen Municipal People’s Congress & serves in 12th National People’s Congress.