Rewind to the 65th minute of the UEFA EURO 2016 opener between host nation France and Romania in Paris. French hearts sank momentarily when Bogdan Stancu scored a penalty to level the match at 1-1, but for a certain David He, General Manager of Hisense France, it was a moment of mixed emotions.

For David, seeing his company’s branding boldly displayed on the perimeter advertising boards at the Stade de France when Stancu slotted past Hugo Lloris was the coronation of many months of preparation and hard work.

“We were pleased that France was leading because it is host of the tournament and the further France goes, the more domestic interest there will be,” David told GlobalSportsJobs. “But at the same time, when Romania equalised we were very excited to see the Hisense logo displayed behind the goal.

“France, of course went on to win the opening game and I think the fans around the world enjoyed the match and the spectacle, but for us at Hisense, the most important thing was that we presented our brand on the European stage.”

Hisense is the first Chinese company to sponsor a European Championship in the tournament’s 56-year history and David is experiencing first-hand how much awareness is being generated by this landmark partnership: “In China, Hisense is a household name. It’s the number one TV brand. In Europe, though, brand awareness is much lower. If you ask people in the street, they have never heard of Hisense.

“Investing in sports sponsorship is a great way to showcase Hisense products and let consumers know that there is a valid, reliable, hi-tech alternative to other TV brands. We have already noticed a significant return on investment, even before the tournament started. In the first five months of this year we have experienced four times the amount of growth in the same period last year.”

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