China Mengniu Dairy, the country’s second-largest dairy producer, is in talks with Fifa to sponsor the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
Mengniu was a sponsor of the 2018 World Cup in Russia, investing RMB 1bn ($149m) in the international sporting event.
The company claims the sponsorship helped boost brand recognition and revenues and reported a 14% growth in sales last year. As the official yoghurt drinks and ice cream brand of the World Cup, Mengniu generated RMB 69 billion during the 2018 tournament, according to China Knowledge.
The Fifa partnership is part of a strategy by Mengniu to boost awareness of the brand as it looks to expand globally.
The dairy company is currently targeting markets across Southeast Asia, as well as the Middle East and Africa.
Mengnui was among a host of Chinese brands to sponsor the 2018 World Cup in Russia, including smartphone giant Vivo, property and entertainment giant Wanda and electronics brand Hisense. E-commerce and technology giant Alibaba is also official presenting partner for the Fifa Club World Cup.
The increased interest in football is part of China’s growing interest in the game, which is surging in popularity following comments by President Xi Jinping who wants China to become a football superpower by 2050.