Here are the top China sports business news stories you need to know from this week:
Zegna Launches Star Plan with Team China
Ermenegildo Zegna Group has become a sponsor of China’s national football team. The Italian luxury menswear brand will launch a Rising Football Star Plan to help develop youth training across the country. Read more on Xinhuanet (Chinese)
Mailman Take: Luxury brands engaging with sports organisations is a growing market trend. China’s teams can benefit from collaborating with luxury brands to help promote their public image, increase access to new demographics, and also make them more attractive to their growing female fanbase. Furthermore, young Chinese athletes with unique personalities or deemed beautiful/handsome are adored by fans. Celebrities are more popular than sports stars in China, therefore these partnerships are important to reach the younger generation.
Vivo Partners with Major Hoop Battle
Chinese smartphone brand Vivo has become the title sponsor of the Hoop Battle Championship Philippines 2018. The event is part of an annual 3×3 basketball tournament held throughout Asia. Read more on CNR (Chinese) and CNN (English)
Mailman Take: At the 2020 Olympic Games, 3×3 basketball will debut as an official sport. Basketball 3×3 already has a strong and growing fanbase in China. Since 2004, KFC has sponsored the tournaments and more than 1.6 million teenagers have participated. Besides KFC, a number of global brands and organisations, such as Nike, NBA, Sina Sports, and FIBA have also held 3×3 tournaments in China. Sina sports has committed a lot of resources to help commercialise the game and received more than RMB 10 million in sponsorship last year.
Li-Ning Sponsors Mexican Club
Li-Ning will sponsor Liga MX football team, Club Puebla. This partnership will allow Li-Ning to provide match and training kits for the team starting from next season. Read more on Enjoyz (Chinese) and Diariocambio (English)
Argentina Signs Chinese Sponsor
Chinese wooden floor manufacturer Der Group has become the first official Chinese sponsor of the Argentinian national football team. Der Group will launch a series of crossover marketing campaigns together with the team during the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Read more on Xinhuanet (Chinese)
EDG Raises Fund Co-Led by Yao Capital
Chinese esports organisation Edward Gaming (EDG) has closed its pre-A funding round. The round is being co-led by Yao Capital, which is co-founded by NBA Hall-of-Famer Yao Ming. It’s estimated EDG will raise close to RMB 100 million. EDG currently plays in China’s LPL and KPL. Read more on Sohu (Chinese) and EsportsObserver (English)
Team Brazil Scores Chinese Sponsor
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