The National Women’s Hockey League announces a landmark partnership; the International Volleyball Federation scores major points in growing the sport globally; and Tencent’s new streaming platform, Trovo, becomes LEC’s official broadcast partner. For these stories and more, check out the Red Phoenix Global Sports Update:

NWHL Hails Discover Sponsorship as Largest in League’s History

Discover Financial Services and the National Women’s Hockey League announced a partnership, the largest in NWHL history, that includes Discover becoming the Official Credit Card of the NWHL. In addition to Discover having a strong on-ice advertising presence during NWHL games, it will also be the official presenting sponsor of the Isobel Cup, signifying the first time a professional women’s hockey league will be broadcast on a major U.S. cable channel. Full Story Sports Pro Media (02/01)

Burnley Forced to Seek New Shirt Sponsor amid LoveBet’ Financial Difficulties’

English soccer club Burnley FC is trying to find a replacement for their current shirt sponsor LoveBet. It is reported that the club is ‘exploring new options’ with LoveBet experiencing ‘serious financial difficulties’ due to the impact of the pandemic. Burnley’s three-year deal with LoveBet started last season, with the contract estimated to be worth around $10.2 million a year. Agents in Asia have been approached with the opportunity to become Burnley’s shirt sponsor for the rest of the current season and the entire 2021/22 campaign for ‘several million pounds.’ Full Story SBC News (02/01)

FIVB Partners with CVC Capital Partners to Drive Global Growth of Volleyball

The International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) and CVC Capital Partners Fund VII announced the launch of Volleyball World, a new partnership that will drive innovation, growth, and investment in volleyball globally. Volleyball World will become the commercial entity for the sport worldwide, aiming to increase the sport’s profile and popularity through fresh investment for the benefit of fans, players, and National Federations. Volleyball is the fourth most popular sport globally, with more than 800 million fans and high participation across attractive markets, including Italy, Brazil, Japan, Poland, China, and the US. Full Story Yahoo (02/01)

LEC Names Trovo Official Broadcast Partner

Live streaming platform Trovo has become an official broadcaster of the 2021 League of Legends European Championship (LEC). Trovo was launched in 2020 by Chinese technology firm Tencent, which also owns Riot Games. Trovo offers viewers another route to watch the likes of G2 Esports attempt to retain their number one status in Europe. Additionally, it provides custom-made virtual gifts to viewers on every game day. Full Story Esports Insider (01/29)

UCI Upgrades and Extends Deal with Shimano

The Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) has extended its deal with Japanese bicycle component manufacturer Shimano. The expanded contract sees Shimano upgraded to a World Cycling Partner of the UCI. The new deal will run from 2021 to 2024 and grant Shimano a presence at most UCI World Championship events and the UCI Mountain Bike and Cyclo-cross World Cups. Full Story UCI (01/29)

Yui Hasegawa Joins AC Milan Women

The AC Milan Women have officially signed Japanese international Yui Hasegawa. Hasegawa rose through the ranks at Beleza and helped the team claim five straight league titles from 2015 with her skills and solid decision-making on the pitch. The 24-year-old was part of Japan’s 2014 Under-17 World Cup-winning side. She has eight goals in 42 games for Nadeshiko Japan since her senior national team debut in 2017 and played in the 2019 World Cup in France. Full Story AFC (01/29)

Amundi Becomes Title Sponsor of LPGA’s Evian Championship

French asset management company Amundi has agreed to a five-year deal with the Ladies Professional Golf Association to become the title sponsor of the Evian Championship. The women’s golf major has, in turn, been renamed the Amundi Evian Championship. It has also been announced that the tournament’s prize purse has risen by $400,000 to $4.5MM. This year’s event is scheduled to be held from July 22-25 at Evian Resort Golf Club in Evian-les-Bains, France. Full Story LPGA (02/01)

Xi Jinping Envisions Success of 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics

Chinese President Xi Jinping has reassured International Olympic Committee president, Thomas Bach, that despite disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, China will present the 2022 winter Games in line with the current schedule. Xi stressed the nation had been steadily moving forward with the Games’ preparatory work amid the difficulties resulting from the pandemic by implementing strict epidemic control measures. The two also discussed the collaboration between the IOC and Chinese authorities about health matters and the actions already being implemented to ensure the winter Games would be safe and secure. Full Story China Daily (01/26)

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