The Beijing municipal government has launched a high-level investigation into allegations of bribery and corruption at the Beijing Media Group and is due to deliver a report on the probe next month, according to a source close to the Beijing government. The inquiry relates to sponsorship deals by the government-backed Beijing Youth Daily - one of the most popular newspapers in Beijing - for the China Tennis Open and the 2008 Olympic Games and allegations that it gave its advertising arm Beijing Media a business advantage over its rivals. 'The government feels it has lost face in this case as it has always treasured the Beijing Youth Daily as one of the jewels in the crown of the capital city,' the source said. 'Without a higher level of involvement [in the investigation], the measures taken against any wrongdoing, if found, would not be enough to convince the investment community that the same malpractice wouldn't happen again.' The team from the Beijing government is understood to be working alongside PricewaterhouseCoopers, Beijing Media's auditor since its listing in December last year, and a Chinese auditing company. The two firms launched an inspection in October after six company officials were detained by the authorities. No further information was available except that the authority had made allegations of bribery and corruption. Sun Wei, the executive director of Beijing Media, declined to comment on the investigation which is being carried out by members of the Beijing office of the Ministry of Finance, the State Administration of Foreign Exchange and the state-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission. Following a profit warning in August, interim earnings at Beijing Media suffered a catastrophic collapse, falling to 170,000 yuan from 66.31 million yuan for the same period a year earlier. The profit drop was blamed on a 28.3 per cent fall in total advertising revenue, principally from the property sector. Sources said second-half advertising revenue at Beijing Media was back on track after vice-president Du Min had taken over the advertising operation but that second-half revenues would be booked next year since little could be done to help overall performance at the company.