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Tuesday, January 15, 2013
United add two sponsors from China

ESPN staff

Manchester United have added to their growing portfolio of global sponsors by announcing deals with two Chinese companies.

Wahaha, a soft drinks manufacturer, and China Construction Bank (CCB) have both signed region-specific three-year agreements with United.

CCB will hold the exclusive rights to produce the official Manchester United branded credit card in mainland China. Wahaha has been the largest beverage producer in China for the past 11 years and will be the club's first official soft drinks partner in the country.

"Manchester United has a long association with China, visiting 11 times to play friendly matches,'' United commercial director Richard Arnold said. "The first time was in 1975 and the most recent visit in August last year.

"Manchester United has a huge following in China of 108 million. We know from our visits there, including to Shanghai last summer, that our Chinese followers have always been among the most supportive."

It is the latest in a long line of sponsorship deals signed by United to tie up smaller areas of the market not covered by other bigger contracts, such as the new shirt deal with carmakers Chevrolet which is worth a reported 357 million through to 2021.

The deals mean United now currently have 44 official sponsors associated with the club.

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