Infront China to seek domestic sponsors for Basketball World Cup
Infront China, an arm of the international sports marketing agency, was today officially appointed to market commercial rights in the country to the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019, to be held on home soil.
As the exclusive marketing partner in China, the subsidiary will be responsible for driving sponsorship, merchandising and hospitality revenues.
The appointment, which was announced at a press conference in Beijing, was anticipated given that Infront China already has a role within FIBA Marketing, the venture set up after parent company Wanda Group signed a 17-year agreement with FIBA to sell sponsorship and licensing rights to its events back in June 2016.
Infront China has made a significant contribution to the development of basketball in China through a 13-year partnership with the CBA, the top league in the country, which expired in 2017, and will be fully engaged in the first World Cup to be held there.
Frank Leenders, the director of FIBA marketing and communications, said: “I very much appreciate the LOC and Infront China’s great support for the preparation of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019.
“It is our honour to form a strategic partnership with Infront China, one of the most respected sports marketing companies in the world. As the exclusive marketing partner in China for FBWC 2019, Infront China's rich local marketing experience and international expertise will contribute greatly to the commercial development of the tournament."
Anne Zhao, managing director of Infront China, added: “In these 13 years of support given to Chinese basketball, Infront China has developed a unique basketball DNA. I am grateful to FIBA, CBA and the Joint Management Committee’s trust.
“We look forward to developing and providing mutually beneficial commercial opportunities to our partners and sponsors and making a joint effort to present a wonderful and successful World Cup to all the basketball fans around the world.”
Wanda's agreement with FIBA runs until 2033, including four men's World Cups, with a particular focus on the 2019 event, but also covers Women's Basketball World Cups, qualifiers for the World Cup competitions, the men's and women's Continental Cups and their qualifiers and Youth World Championships.
At today’s press conference the World Cup 2019 organisers launched the mascot solicitation process, with fans from across China invited to submit ideas for the design.
Wanda will be involved in the process, with Wanda Themed Entertainment hosting an event in Wuhan in January in which the 10 most interesting concepts will be presented to the public.
The best three ideas will be shortlisted by an expert panel before the winner is selected and unveiled in Dongguan on 23 February.