London, April 26 (IANS) China’s smartphone maker OPPO has become the first official smartphone partner of Wimbledon tennis championships, the All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC) announced on Thursday.
OPPO, based in South China’s Shenzhen, signed a five-year deal with AELTC at the Champions Room of the world’s most famous tennis tournament, the Xinhua news agency reported.
The partnership represents the Chinese company’s first move into tennis after it has become the official mobile phone partner to FC Barcelona and the International Cricket Council (ICC).
Brian Shen, Vice President of OPPO, said: “We are thrilled to announce we are the first Asian partner of The Championships, Wimbledon .. We are confident this partnership will further strengthen our expansion plans across the European marketplace and in turn our communication globally.”
Mick Desmond, Commercial and Media Director of AELTC, said: “We are delighted to welcome OPPO to the family of official suppliers to The Championships and we very much look forward to seeing the OPPO smartphones bring Wimbledon’s iconic beauty to life for our audiences around the world.”
The partnership will help “OPPO grow their presence in key developing markets,” the Chinese company said in a statement. “OPPO will use the strength of the Wimbledon brand to grow its presence across the UK and Europe, and demonstrates the determination of a long-term investment in the market.”
“AELTC will benefit from OPPO’s considerable brand strength to grow the reach of Wimbledon in markets that OPPO covers, particularly China,” the statement said.
It said that an “OPPO Breakthrough Award” will also be presented from this year’s tournament to young players who make major breakthroughs.
OPPO will also play a significant role in support of the professional grass court season and the promotion of the AELTC’s grass court strategy, which aims to provide enhanced opportunities for juniors to compete on grass courts at all stages of their development, “with the ultimate aim of becoming a Wimbledon champion”, it said.