Basketball in China was the big item last week as well as sponsorship announcements in soccer, golf and news from the Asian Games.
The Miami Heat’s tour of China was the background for the presentation of the new Dwayne Wade sneakers. Officials of the Li Ning footwear brand hope the arrangement with the team’s star guard and the publicity surrounding the new basketball shoes will help turn things around for the company which has been struggling against Chinese rival Peak as well as Nike.
The company managed to lure Wade away from Jordan Brand.
The reigning NBA league champions -complete with its iconic stars such as LeBron James and Dwayne Wade- is touring the world’s most populous country for a week of pre-season games.
They play the Los Angeles Clippers twice during the NBA China Games starting in Beijing and then again later in the week in Shanghai. The itinerary is hectic with VIP receptions, a trip to the Great Wall of China and culinary excursions for the players.
“I'm sure we're going to eat some funky meals where we can all say, `Oh, that was nasty,“’ said Heat forward Shane Battier, who has endorsed the Chinese shoe brand Peak since 2006. Probably not the cultural niceties the brand was looking for.
In soccer news, Chelsea had a busy week. The team signed a deal with the International Beverage Trading Company that will make Grand Royal Whiskey the official whiskey of the European champions for the next two years.
An official for the agency that brokered the deal, Sports Revolution, said Chelsea would help activate the partnership when it visits the company’s home territory of Myanmar during its 2013-2014 pre-season tour.
The Premier League champions also extended their arrangement with Singha Beer for another five years. The next match against Norwich will feature demonstrations of Thai culture with a group of Thai dancers in traditional costume and various native football freestylers showing off their skills.
The Professional Golf Tour of India announced an extension of its sponsorship contract with CG Ltd. for the next three years while Malaysian Airlines announced its return as the official airline of the CIMB Classic 2012.
The 72-hole stroke play event combines the top players from three official sanctioning bodies: the PGA Tour, the Asian Tour and the Professional Golf Association of Malaysia.
The event, set for Oct. 24 -28 and will be held at the Mines Resort and Golf Club in Seri Kembangan for a total prize purse of USD $6.1 million.
Korean Airlines has signed up as a prestige partner of the 2014 Asian Games. Other sponsors include the Swiss luxury watch brand Tissot as the official timekeeper.
The Hanjin Group, Korean Air’s parent company is building marina facilities in Incheon, South Korea as well as hotel in the city for use during the Games. The 17th Asian Games began on September 19th.