European football powerhouse FC Bayern Munich has opened a flagship store on Tmall.com, China’s largest B2C shopping website.
The club, Germany’s newly crowned champion, is selling jerseys and other fan merchandise directly to Chinese consumers through a collaboration with Tmall Global, Tmall’s cross-border solutions provider, and DHL eCommerce, according to a press release from the companies.
DHL eCommerce, part of DHL, the world’s leading logistics company, will provide international delivery services and manage part of FC Bayern Munich’s merchandising in China, working with Tmall Global on product listing, order management, fulfillment of orders, local distribution and returns, local customer service and market entry support.
By opening a Tmall flagship store, FC Bayern Munich joins British club Liverpool, as well as America’s NBA basketball and NFL football leagues, as sports organizations that use the site to tap China’s large and growing base of fans. The German club has an estimated 90 million followers on the mainland.
“Making our fan merchandise accessible is crucial to connect with our fans in China,” said Bayern Munich Chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge in a prepared statement. Jörg Wacker, FC Bayern Munich’s executive board member, internationalization and strategy, added that the country is key to the club’s efforts to reach fans worldwide and “for our market entry in China, Tmall Global is the best platform since many of our fans already use the platform today. Together with our strategic partner DHL, we will ensure a fast delivery.”
Tmall.com is part of e-commerce giant Alibaba Group, which operates China’s largest online-shopping marketplaces with some 350 million Chinese users. Jeff Zhang, president of China Retail Marketplaces for Alibaba, called the addition of FC Bayern Munich’s exclusive flagship store to the Tmall platform “a very important step in our European strategy.”
FC Bayern Munich is the world’s biggest football club with over 255,000 members and also one of the most successful having won five Champions League titles, three Club World Cup trophies as well as 25 national championships.