Europa League champions Chelsea FC have announced a new three-year partnership with Nitto Tire, a care tire company based in Thailand. This is just one more example of the world’s top teams, especially in the BPL, focusing on Asian market expansion.
Though dollar figures were not given, according to a recent article from Soccerex, Nitto Tire will be featured and involved in community efforts from Chelsea’s recently formed soccer school in the country’s capital city, Bangkok. They will also be a part of player meet and greets, as well as sponsorship “traveling road shows” that will also include Chelsea’s other Thai sponsors like Adidas, Samsung, and Singha. This announcement comes just before the club’s “Here to Play, Here to Stay” summer tour that will base the team in Bangkok before heading out to Malaysia and Indonesia.
The summer tour, a new sponsorship deal, and the soccer school are all signs that the club is investing in the area and wants to continue to build its brand presence there. Chelsea’s Managing Director for Asia-Pacific, Adrian New, was quoted in the article saying,
Chelsea FC’s official website has been available in Thai since our last Asia Tour in 2011. We are also posting in Thai on our official Facebook page which has more than 650,000 likes from Thailand, and a dedicated Thai Twitter account. This clearly shows our dedication in reaching out to our Thai fans, especially when we opened a soccer school here in July last year.
Chelsea also have soccer schools in other Asian markets as well, including the Philippines, Hong Kong, and Singapore. In fact, they only have 4 “overseas” soccer schools listed on its website, and 3 of those 4 are in the Asian markets just mentioned, clearly indicating that they want to focus on this market for the future.