Barcelona Expand Into China With IMG Partnership
Thu 12th Mar 2015 | Marketing & PR
FC Barcelona signed a strategic partnership with IMG which will see the sports management firm exclusively represent the commercial interests of the Spanish giants in China.
The agreement covers marketing and branding strategy, sponsorships, friendlies and travel and will strengthen the club’s presence in the Chinese market, both quantitatively and qualitatively. Barcelona already has an office for the Asia–Pacific market based in Hong Kong.
In addition to the Club’s Chinese website (http://fcbarcelona.qq.com/), FC Barcelona currently has a strong presence in China via the country’s three biggest social networks: WeChat, Tencent and Sina Weibo.
In June 2014, the club and Chinese electronics retailer Suning signed an official sponsorship agreement by which the chain became the club’s first official Chinese sponsor.
Ignacio Mestre, CEO of FC Barcelona, "We are impressed by the work IMG has done in developing football in China. It is the perfect partner for a strategic relationship.
“China is a very important country for us to connect with our fans and continue to be successful, and it is imperative that we work with a company that understands the Chinese market and has a history of success."
Robbie Henchman, SVP, Head of IMG Asia Pacific, "FC Barcelona is an iconic football club with a rich history that reaches around the football world. We are very excited at the idea of working with the club in China.
"Our unique experience in China will allow the club to develop its interests in various areas and strengthen FC Barcelona’s already strong presence in a country that we know very well.
“We have been at the forefront of the growing football industry in China, especially through our work to cultivate and develop the Chinese Super League (CSL) as a strategic partner of La Liga.”
Posted by: Aaron Gourley
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