Anta Sports, the big player in the Chinese sporting goods sector, has outlined its strategy to move into the soccer business. The group’s attempt to win China’s youth for the sport is called “Play Is All”.
Anta’s approach for a successful market penetration involves more than just the launch of its own line of soccer footwear and other gear. It’s an all-round concept to enhance participation. This includes organizing matches, training young players and coaches and sponsoring current and former professional Chinese players as brand ambassadors.
Support for promising young talents is not only limited to sponsoring rookies, but also includes building new pitches where young Chinese can play football.
Anta’s strategy has four key elements: First, the creation of the Jiangsu Youth Soccer League involving 1,000 elementary schools and high schools. Over five different levels, around 20,000 young players will be given the opportunity to participate in 200,000 matches.
Secondly, Anta is to sponsor the players of Evergrande Football School, which is backed by the Real Madrid training program, with professional soccer gear.
Third up, Anta has carried out extensive research measuring the feet of about 16,000 Chinese kids to ensure the best possible fit for its newly created footwear.
And finally, the sports brand is teaming up with Shuhua Company, a firm specializing in fitness equipment and venue building. The two partners will focus on developing pitches for cage soccer, notably at schools which do not have the space or facilities for soccer fields.