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World Snooker Tour partners with Red Lantern to boost Asian market

The World Snooker Tour has joined forces with Red Lantern, a digital media company that specialises in the Asian market.

It is WST’s intention to expand snooker’s digital media presence throughout Asia and develop the sport’s popularity with fans.

This new partnership will focus on mainland China but will also reach into India, Thailand, Singapore, and Hong Kong.

Red Lantern is a global leader in the digital media sphere, working with the Premier League, FIFA, F1, the PGA Tour, and many other major sports properties.

They specialise in growing relationships with fans through outstanding targeted content and interaction.

WST’s Chief Marketing and Communications Officer Tom Rowell said: “We have built up a strong fanbase in China, for example on Weibo alone we have 1.4 million followers and 24 million video views last season.”

“However, we recognise the need to take this to the next level and to truly exploit the popularity of snooker in China, particularly as this year we are staging major tournaments there for the first time since 2019.

“This new partnership with Red Lantern will allow us to achieve those goals by creating regionalised, multi-language content, across a wide range of social media platforms throughout the Asia region.

“We have been one of the most successful sports in China over the past 20 years and we believe we can out-perform many other major sports in the digital sphere.

“So far, we have only scratched the surface of what we can achieve. This will boost the profile of snooker, to the benefit of all our partners, players, and fans.

“And we expect to see similar growth through targeted content in Thailand, India, Singapore, and Hong Kong, where we know there is massive potential.

“We are thrilled to start this journey with Red Lantern and to push our boundaries much further.”

Lewis Hannam, founder of Red Lantern, said: “We are delighted to enter into this innovative partnership with WST.”

“We have always felt snooker is one of the great sporting success stories in China and we look forward to helping WST build and understand their audience in China and Asia much further.”

“We will be creating relevant content on relevant platforms to underpin growth amongst the next generation of fans.

“We are excited to unlock its potential and see where it can take WST.”

The Shanghai Masters in September will be the first World Snooker Tour event in China in almost four years as a result of the pandemic.

Ronnie O’Sullivan last triumphed at the prestigious invitational tournament with an 11-9 victory over Shaun Murphy in the 2019 final.

Two weeks later, Murphy prevailed at the China Championship in Guangzhou thanks to a 10-9 defeat of Mark Williams.

Judd Trump also secured a brace of titles in the country during that 2019/20 snooker season, first at the International Championship before then repeating the trick at the World Open – the most recent tournament staged in mainland China.

In addition to the Shanghai Masters, the inaugural Wuhan Open and the returning International Championship are on this season’s schedule so far.

Featured photo credit: WST

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