Home / Business / Companies

New partnership to get marathon event running

By Hu Yuanyuan and Zheng Yiran | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2017-04-27 10:02

A new agreement has been signed between the Wanda Group, one of China's largest business conglomerates, and Abbott World Marathon Majors (Abbott WMM), coming together to organize the world's largest marathon series in China.

As stated in the agreement, which was the vendor's latest effort in exploring the sports business sector, the Wanda Group will host three Abbott WMM races in the Asia-Pacific region over the next decade, with the first event being held in China.

Wang Jianlin, chairman of the Wanda Group, said the organization was "going to inaugurate the China World Marathon Major in (the next) two or three years".

"(It will add) a new world-class sports brand in China," he said.

"(The aim for) Wanda Sports in 2017 is to create two to three world-class sports events."

Currently, marathon events are the most popular participation sport in China, as well as the fastest-growing. Although a number of Chinese cities hold these types of events each year, none are internationally recognized.

Under the new agreement, the Wanda Group will possess an exclusive right to host an Abbott WMM race in China, based in a city jointly picked by the Wanda Group and Abbott WMM. The aim behind the race will be to raise awareness of the marathon event, as well as improve the international reputation of the hosting city.

Abbott WMM, an organization established in 2006, has a series of six World Marathon Majors for the cities of Tokyo, Boston, London, Berlin, Chicago and New York City.

In 2016, each Abbott WMM race attracted people from more than 100 countries, and drew a total of 230,000 participants and an audience of more than 6.5 million.

Tim Hadzima, WMM General Manager, said that "every year, almost a million people apply to take part in WMM races and our cooperation with Wanda Group will develop this phenomenal interest in marathon running."

Most Viewed in 24 Hours