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DHL PARTNERS AFC CHAMPIONS LEAGUE

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Bangkok--16 Mar--Hill & Knowlton
DHL signs on as Official Timing and Logistics Partner for Asia’s premier club competition for 2009-2012

The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Champions League, Asia’s top club competition, kicks off the 2009 season with DHL, the world’s leading express delivery and logistics company, as the Official Timing and Logistics Partner.

The exclusive four-year partnership includes a first-ever screening of a 10-second DHL animated timing graphic in each of the AFC Champions League (ACL) 117 ‘live’ match broadcasts per season; the right to use the official designation of “Official Logistics Partner of AFC Champions League” in all advertising, promotions and marketing materials; and having a branded segment named the “DHL Delivery of the Week” featured in the weekly football magazine show, showcasing the ‘best delivery’ from all the ACL games that week.

Chananyarak Phetcharat, Managing Director DHL Express Thailand and Indochina said “DHL is a strong supporter of major international and local sporting events and activities that display attributes of teamwork, speed and reliability. This tradition will be kept going. At the global level, DHL partners F1 globally as the official logistics provider for the world’s most popular automotive race. In Thailand, we have sponsored the Bangkok Lions Rugby Football Club for 6 years. AFC Champions League is a perfect addition to the list as not only is football the most watched sport in Asia Pacific including Thailand but most importantly, a successful football team and DHL share the same values: teamwork, accuracy, and reliability.”

The new format of the AFC Champions League, set to kick off on March 10, promises even more action and excitement from some of the region’s top clubs, including the defending champion, Gamba Osaka. Thirty two teams from across Asia, including Australia, China, Indonesia, Japan, Korea and Singapore will battle it out for an increased total prize money of US$8 million and be crowned champions of Asia – the most coveted title for Asian football clubs.

AFC President, Mohamed bin Hammam said, "It gives me great pleasure to welcome DHL, as a new partner of the AFC Champions League and into the fold of the Asian football family. These are exciting times for club football as we embark on a new journey that will raise the level of professionalism within our game here in Asia. As a tournament that involves clubs from 13 countries spanning a 9-month period, we are fortunate to have a partner like DHL, who will deliver invaluable logistical support in the staging of the competition".

In less than a decade since it was first launched, the AFC Champions League has grown in popularity, reach and stature throughout the region. All matches are broadcast on cable, terrestrial and satellite television throughout Asia as well as online via www.the-afc.tv, accessible worldwide.

Ian Mathie, Senior Vice President, Football – South Asia, Asean & Australia, World Sport Group, said, “We are delighted to welcome DHL to the AFC family. The AFC Champions League is experiencing dramatic growth and we expect to see live, television and broadband audiences continue to soar across the region. Clearly, DHL has recognized the value and benefits of associating with this competition and we look forward to working with them to successfully fulfill their communication goals and brand aspirations.”

Thirty-two teams (sixteen teams each from the East and West of Asia) have been drawn into eight groups of four for the round robin first round.
AFC Champion League schedule in Thailand at Supachalasai National Stadium
Group G
10/03/2009 Chonburi (THA) vs Eastern Athletic (HKG) 18.30 hrs.
21/04/2009 Chonburi (THA) vs Hanoi ACB (VIE) 18.30 hrs.
19/05/2009 Chonburi (THA) vs Kedah (MAL) 18.30 hrs.
Group H
17/03/2009 P.E.A (THA) vs Home United (SIN) 19.00 hrs.
07/04/2009 P.E.A (THA) vs Becamex Bin Duong (VIE) 19.00 hrs.
05/05/2009 P.E.A (THA) vs Valencia (MDV) 19.00 hrs.
Tickets for each match will be available at ticket booths located in front of the Supachalasai National Stadium on the match day from 16.00 hrs onwards.
For more information please contact:
Hill & Knowlton Thailand
Ms. Orawan Chuenwiratsakul
Ms. Pitchpatu Waiyachote
Tel: 0-2627-3501 ext 212 or 217
Fax: 0-2627-3510
Email:ochuenwiratsakul@th.hillandknowlton.com
pwaiyachote@th.hillandknowlton.com

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