Umbro spends Chelsea funds in Asian markets

British football kit manufacturer Umbro is paying up to £7 million for a 25 percent stake in Team & Sports, which distributes its products under licence in China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. The terms are £2.6 million up front and £1.38 million next year, with the rest due if Team & Sports achieves sales targets to 2010. The funds are reportedly part of a £25 million compensation package the company received after English Premier League leaders, Chelsea FC, scrapped a sponsorship deal early.

In a stock market statement, Umbro chief executive Peter McGuigan said China was one of the group's fastest-growing markets. "We have worked with Team & Sports for over 15 years, they a have great team and an in-depth understanding of their market. We are confident that, over the next few years, our combined efforts will deliver sales growth propelling China into one of our largest distribution territories."