Clear Channel Entertainment today (March 7) announced a 50-year joint venture with Beijing Gehua Cultural Development Group (Gehua Group), the state-owned cultural agency.

Clear Channel Entertainment today (March 7) announced a 50-year joint venture with Beijing Gehua Cultural Development Group (Gehua Group), the state-owned cultural agency.

The venture, Gehua Clear Channel Entertainment & Sports Co. Ltd., will bring international entertainment and sports events to China, create opportunities through which Chinese artists and events can tour internationally and create international event and venue management systems within the Chinese sports and entertainment industries. The new company will have headquarters in Beijing and satellite offices in New York and London.

The company will have first right of refusal to produce state-sanctioned live tours of performance shows, promote international events, manage venues, pursue sponsorship opportunities and arrange ticketing, logistics, artist management, food and beverage services and merchandising.

CCE chairman/CEO Brian Becker tells Billboard.biz that while no specific projects can be announced at this time, CCE will invest in tours of the region and venues "depending on the opportunities." He says the longevity of the deal demonstrates "great mutual belief in each other and the opportunities." Becker adds that the deal will appeal strongly to sponsors, given China's huge population base and emerging economy.