Fifa strikes sponsorship deal with third Chinese brand after agreeing $450m partnership with smartphone maker Vivo

Vivo will become a top tier sponsor of Fifa for the next six years

Smartphone manufacturer Vivo has agreed a six-year partnership with Fifa to sponsor the World Cup, making it the third Chinese brand to agree a major sponsorship deal with football’s governing body.

The deal is reportedly worth around $450m and will see Vivo become the exclusive smartphone sponsor of the 2018 Fifa World Cup in Russia and the 2022 edition of the tournament in Qatar. The brand will also be a sponsor of the 2017 and 2021 Confederations Cup tournaments.

The activation of the sponsorship is largely intended to increase international exposure for Vivo and will see its logo appear on pitch side adverting boards, event tickets, press release backdrops and other key promotional areas.

As part of the agreement all Fifa staff will use the company’s smartphones at each event and Vivo will also launch a customised World Cup smartphone.

“As a global sponsor of the World Cup, Vivo hopes to strongly associate itself with the football spirit and show consumers all over the world Vivo’s creative, joyful, and international brand image,” said Vivo executive vice president NI Xudong.

He added that the brand would “bring its personalised, energetic and youthful spirit into the World Cup and the sport of football”.

Fifa’s secretary general, Fatma Samoura, commented: “Football and technology are coming closer by the day, on and off the pitch, and it is a great moment to start a sponsorship of this nature with the leading global smartphone brand.”

Vivo becomes the third major Chinese backer of Fifa, joining Wanda and Hisense as major sponsors of future World Cup tournaments. The investment comes as Chinese smartphone makers such as Vivo and Huawei continue to make gains into Samsung and Apple's market share.

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