Kia Motors is joining its Hyundai sibling in becoming an official partner of FIFA for the 2010 and 2014 World Cups and other FIFA competitions.

At the Geneva Motor Show on 1 March, Hyundai-Kia Vice Chairman Dr Dong-Jin Kim and FIFA President, Joseph S Blatter signed the new partnership contract that will see the Kia brand joining Hyundai in supporting the world’s biggest and most well-known sporting event.

Hyundai is currently FIFA partner for the 2006 event in Germany, but Kia will play a central role in the 2010 event in South Africa and the 2014 event that is expected to be held in South America.

Kia has followed an aggressive sports marketing strategy in global markets with sponsorship of the Australian Open tennis competition, the Davis Cup and World Inline Skating. In the UK, Kia is also closely involved in tennis with the Lawn Tennis Association, sponsoring the National Club League – the country’s biggest grass-roots competition. Kia also supports the Leeds Tykes and Leeds Rhinos rugby clubs and is the vehicle supplier to the Nationwide Football Conference.

Kia Motors (UK) Limited Managing Director Paul Williams said: "This is great news for Kia and for football fans as it puts our brand at the heart of soccer on the world-wide stage.

"We are very happy to be joining our friends at Hyundai in this relationship and I am sure it will strengthen the commitment to FIFA and football. It will also continue to raise the awareness of Kia as a global player in the automotive industry."

Published : 10/03/05 Author : Melanie Carter

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