Xtep will pay the English Premier League club 90 million Hong Kong dollars (11.6 million US dollars) in the five-year agreement to start in August, a company spokeswoman said, replacing Birmingham’s current sponsor Umbro.
Xtep, which has more than 5,000 outlets across China, will supply Birmingham City with new kit bearing the joint “Xtep-BCFC” logo, she said.
As part of the deal, at least eight Birmingham matches would be shown on mainland Chinese television, Xtep said, adding that it was the first Chinese firm to ink a sponsorship deal with a Premier League club.
Hong Kong businessman Carson Yeung, who purchased Birmingham in October, hailed the agreement as a way to tap a vast market in China.
“Xtep provides an excellent platform for us to bring our English Premier League team to the PRC (Chinese) market and promote Birmingham City FC to a wider group of football fans,” Yeung said in a statement issued by Xtep.
The agreement is Birmingham’s largest sponsorship deal, the club said on its Website, adding that fans will have a say in the new kit’s design.
“It is the club’s intention that Blues supporters will have a direct input into the final selection of the design of the new playing kit,” Birmingham said without elaborating.
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