Womei Media Excited to Partner With the ISA and Bring Surfing to China
China's Leading Media and Sports Marketing Firm Hopes to Blend Chinese Culture With the Sport of Surfing
Hainan Wanning Riyue Bay International Surfing Festival Presented by Quiksilver
January 5, 2012
Wanning, Hainan Island, China
The idea to bring competitive surfing to China began in a casual lunchtime discussion over a year and a half ago in Dubai at a conference of Olympic Movement leaders. During that discussion, Fernando Aguerre, the president of the ISA, shared his vision of introducing surfing to China's 1.3 billion citizens with members of Womei Media, in hopes of further expanding the sport and bringing something new and exciting to the Chinese sporting culture.
What came to fruition is the Hainan Wanning Riyue Bay International Surfing Festival Presented by Quiksilver, which will consist of back-to-back surf contests, the Taste of Hainan food festival, and live music. The hope is to blend surfing with elements of Chinese culture.
"I came to the ISA to develop surfing around the world, while working for a better surfing future," Aguerre said. "We want to see the sport growing all over the world – and it's happening. We're going to learn from the Chinese and they're going to learn from us, which is an essential way to build a better world. I believe this event will be the proper launching pad for surfing in China, and be remembered as the event that laid the foundations for the development of our sport in China."
The two-event Festival will begin on January 7 with the ISA China Cup and conclude on January 14 with the final day of competition for the Hainan Classic, an ASP Men's 4-Star. The hope is that the Festival serves as the initial spark in nurturing surfing in China. The Festival is the joint work of the ISA and Womei Media, a Beijing sports and media organization that is exclusively representing the ISA's commercial interests in China.
"Surfing is not only a sport, but rather a new lifestyle," said Dunhao Wang, the CEO of Womei Media. "It is associated with passion, leisure, and creativity. As one of the largest media companies in China, we want to promote a new lifestyle for Chinese people, whether young people or senior citizens. We would like to tell them to embrace it with enthusiasm because surfing can help them relieve pressure and fear, and stay close to nature."
Womei Media's decision to partner with the ISA was through "a very long and careful process," according to Wang. Ultimately, Womei Media recognized and trusted the ISA's "expertise to bring this wonderful project to China."
The four-day ISA China Cup will feature the finest surfers from the top eight qualifying countries, based on the results of the 2011 ISA World Surfing Games. Each country will field a National Team of 4 men and 2 women vying for team and individual gold medal. Immediately following completion of the ISA China Cup, the Hainan Classic, with its $95,000 USD prize-purse, will commence. Much like the ISA China Cup, the contest will draw surfers from all over the globe, but instead of competing for their country, surfers will be vying for individual ASP World Ranking points and a piece of the prize-purse.
While the large majority of the competitors in the two events will be internationals, Aguerre and Wang are optimistic that in the coming years, through the continued growth of the sport and the culture in the country, there will be a number of Chinese men and women competing at future ISA events, on the WQS and possibly, one day, on the ASP World Tour.
"The sport is still really young in China," Aguerre said. "We know there are local surfers as well as some expat surfers. There are some surf shops, but Womei and the ISA believe that by hosting this event, we will be helping fast-track surfing's growth in China – in a sustainable way."
The Festival opens on January 7 with the traditional ISA Opening Ceremony, the Parade of the Nations and the Sands of the World Ceremony, which will be held at the Le Meridian Hotel in the city of Wanning, Hainan Island, China.
Registration for the Hainan Classic is open now on www.aspaustralasia.com.
The event will be webcasted live on www.hainaninternationalsurfingfestival.com beginning January 7 and until the final day, January 14.
About the International Surfing Association
The International Surfing Association (ISA) is recognized by the International Olympic Committee as the World Governing Authority for Surfing. It was originally founded as the International Surfing Federation in 1964 and has been running Open Division World Championships since 1964, Junior World Championships since 1980, and Masters World Championships since 2007. The ISA also sanctions the World Kneeboard Titles and the Tandem Surfing World Title, and the first stand-alone World Bodyboard Championship in 2011, and the first World Standup Paddle (SUP) and Paddleboard Championship will be held in 2012.
ISA membership includes the surfing National Governing Bodies of 70 countries on five continents. Its headquarters are located in San Diego, California. It is presided over by Fernando Aguerre (Argentina), first elected President in 1994 in Rio de Janeiro and re-elected seven times since. The ISA´s three Vice-Presidents are Alan Atkins (AUS), Karín Sierralta (PER) and Debbie Beacham (USA).
About Womei Media
Womei Media is a complete media group with headquarters in Beijing, China. Womei Media consists of a sports marketing division that is dedicated to introducing new and exciting sports to the Chinese people by organizing and promoting major sporting events throughout the country. Womei Media is an advertising agency for CCTV, China´s largest national TV network. The company also publishes and distributes print magazines, and it is developing a chain of movie theaters throughout China. Womei Media is the primary Chinese commercial agent of the ISA (International Surfing Association), UCI (Union Cycliste Internationale), and the National Basketball Association´s Houston Rockets.
Quiksilver, Inc. (NYSE:ZQK) is the world´s leading outdoor sports lifestyle company, which designs, produces and distributes a diversified mix of branded apparel, footwear, accessories, snowboards and related products.The company´s apparel and footwear brands represent a casual lifestyle for young-minded people that connect with its boardriding culture and heritage.
The reputation of Quiksilver´s brands is based on outdoor action sports. The company´s Quiksilver, Roxy, DC, Lib Tech and Hawk brands are synonymous with the heritage and culture of surfing, skateboarding and snowboarding.
The company´s products are sold in over 90 countries in a wide range of distribution, including surf shops, skate shops, snow shops, its proprietary Boardriders Club shops and Quiksilver company-owned retail stores, other specialty stores and select department stores. Quiksilver´s corporate and Americas´ headquarters are in Huntington Beach, California, while its European headquarters are in St.Jean de Luz, France, and its Asia/Pacific headquarters are in Torquay, Australia.
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