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Chinese company Advantage Sports Union becomes Phoenix Rising shareholder

By Nong Ruowen 11 Feb 2018

As reported by the Chinese football website Sike Football, the United Soccer League club Phoenix Rising FC has welcomed Advantage Sports Union, a Chinese shareholder on board. 

Sike Football disclosed that Advantage Sports Union has purchased 30% shares of Phoenix Rising, making Phoenix Rising the first ever American professional soccer club with investment from China.

Advantage Sports Union’s Chairman Alex Zheng is a famous entrepreneur who serves as the Founder, Co-chairman and Chief Brand Architect of the Plateno Hotel Group, one of the largest hotel chains in Asia. 

In fact, it is not the first time Zheng has invested in a soccer club. In June 2016, Zheng and a group of Chinese and American investors bought 80% shares in the French Premier Ligue 1 club OGC Nice with Tencent Sports saying that Zheng is a significant investor ownIng 40% shares. In 2017/2018 season, OCG Nice qualified to play in the UEFA Champions League. 

Following this deal,Yahoo Finance stated that, “Zheng will bring his hospitality and tourism expertise, international soccer knowledge and business acumen to Phoenix Rising FC as its newest owner and director of the Club's governing board. ” 

Apart from the two football-related partnership and ownership mentioned, Advantage Sports Union has also dedicated itself to building a youth football academy in China, as well as marketing club alliances throughout Asia according to Yahoo Finance. 

Founded in 2016 by Alex Zheng, Advantage Sports Union is a Guangzhou-based company focusing on the global sports recreational industry. Currently, its business includes sports marketing, sports tourism, player marketing, youth training, sports events and other business related to sport and recreation. 

Phoenix Rising Football Club is a professional soccer team based in Phoenix, Arizona. Founded in 2013 as Arizona United Soccer Club, the team is currently a member of the United Soccer League, the second tier of the American soccer pyramid.

Source: Sike Football, Tencent Sports and Yahoo Finance

Proofread by Raymond Fitzpatrick

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