Birken AS, the Norwegian company that owns rights to the storied Birkebeiner race has signed a deal with the Swedish company Nordic Ways AB, allowing the latter to market sporting events in the People’s Republic of China using the brand ‘Birken’.
The press release indicates that “the Chinese Birkebeinerrennet can be arranged already this winter” – without disclosing possible location or any other details.
Nordic Ways ,owned and led by Niclas Hellqvist together with Chinese partners, already holds the rights to Vasaloppet China ski marathon, that is held annually at the beginning of the year in Changchun.
China’s declared goal is to bring a staggering 300 million of its people to take part in winter sports as part of the ramp-up to the Winter Olympic games in Beijing in 2022.
The country has adopted a special “ Winter sports development plan” – so ambitious, it defies imagination: the total size of the national winter sports industry by 2020 “should reach 600 billion yuan, skyrocketing to one trillion yuan ( USD 150 billion) by 2022” http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2017-05/09/c_136268077.htm
With so much money being poured into development of winter sports, Vasaloppet China and now Chinese Birkebeinerrennet appear to have a future quite bright.
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