On Saturday, China’s top market regulator ordered Tencent to end exclusive music licensing deals within 30 days from Saturday, writing that the action was “the first case” of “necessary measures to restore market competition” in a Saturday statement (in Chinese).

Why it matters: The punishment may create openings for other music streamers in China. And the government says it is only the first.

Details: The State Administration for Market Regulation (SAMR) fined Tencent RMB 500,000 ($77,100) for violating market concentration rules with a 2016 acquisition of China Music Corporation. The regulator said that Tencent “illegally concentrated a market,” citing China’s Anti-Monopoly Law

SAMR said the deal gave Tencent control of more than 80% exclusive music libraries in “related market share,” allowing the company to “eliminate and restrict competition.” 

Tencent wrote in an online statement the same day that it will “comply with the regulator’s decision” and “contribute to healthy competition in the market.”

Check out TechNode’s Techlash Tracker for an overview of the crackdown.

Wei Sheng

Wei Sheng is a Beijing-based reporter covering hardware, smartphone, and telecommunications, along with regulations and policies related to the China tech scene. He writes a monthly newsletter tracking...