FIS and Alisports sign agreementto boost winter sport participation in China

Source: Xinhua| 2017-06-16 15:15:41|Editor: Song Lifang
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BEIJING, June 16 (Xinhua) -- The International Ski Federation (FIS) and Alisports forged a cooperation agreement which will aim to grow the number of Chinese winter sport participants to 30 million.

Alisports is the sports division of e-commerce giant Alibaba, who was signed up earlier this year as an International Olympic Committee top tier sponsor until 2028.

According to its agreement with the FIS, Alisports will handle the marketing, promotion, sales and organization of the FIS' "Get into Snow Sports" courses.

It is hoped the use of their expertise will help the FIS attract some 300 million new winter snow sport participants.

The "Get into Snow Sports" development program is a grassroots initiative supported by Beijing Sports University alongside the Chinese Ski Association, as well as FIS Academy and World Academy of Sport experts.

"We are delighted to be able to develop this relationship with such a respected partner, Alisports," said Sarah Lewis, FIS secretary-general.

"Over the past 15 years we have seen the organic growth and popularity of snow sports in China with many innovative events such as the FIS Big Air and Aerials World Cup events hosted in the Bird's Nest," Lewis added.

"This grassroots 'Get into Snow Sports' development program builds on the work the FIS has achieved through our 'Bring Children to the Snow' campaign and the annual 'World Snow Day' and the Chinese Ski Association's engagement in these initiatives is a key driver in taking this important step."

China has already vowed to invest heavily in ice rinks and ski slopes in the coming years to boost their chances of future success.

Alisports founder and chief executive, Zhang Dazhong, claimed the agreement with the FIS will help to dramatically increase the number of people taking part in winter sports in the 2022 Olympic Games host nation.

"Alisports is extremely honored to form this partnership with FIS, and is grateful for the tremendous support from the Chinese Ski Association, which has aided us in this collaboration to implement the 'Get into SnowSports' program," he said.

"This partnership will look to provide better opportunities for even more ordinary people to embrace the Winter Olympic spirit, to fall in love with the snow, and to fall in love with exercising," he added.