Vice-president Manel Arroyo, the vice-president of Mission Hills Group, Tenniel Chu, and president Josep Maria Bartomeu, in the Camp Nou Presidential Box | FCB ARCHIVE

Josep Maria Bartomeu, Òscar Grau and Ronaldinho will travel to China next week to sign the agreement between FC Barcelona and Mission Hills Group. The Barça president and CEO, accompanied by club ambassador Ronaldinho, will first go to Haikou, where on Friday 24 February the strategic partnership will be finalized whereby the first FCBEscola to be completely managed by FC Barcelona will be created, thus helping to expand the club in the Chinese market. This agreement forms part of FC Barcelona’s internationalization program, one of the core aspects of its strategic plan. Bartomeu and Grau will visit the Club’s office in Hong Kong, and will also attend a meeting at the clubhouse of the city’s FC Barcelona supporters club.

The signing of this agreement comes after its approval at the Extraordinary Assembly of Members held on December 18 at the Palau de Congressos in Barcelona. Barça will be developing the project in the city of Haikou, on the Chinese island of Hainan, a non-industrialized area with major environmental sustainability and that is a renowned tourist destination for Chinese people. The Club will be sharing the facility with the Chinese Football Association, where an FCBEscola is scheduled to be opened with seven football fields for coaching over a thousand children. The site will also feature a large ‘Barça experience area’, with a Megastore and a catering area included.

On 25 February, Bartomeu and CEO Òscar Grau will also pay an official visit to FC Barcelona’s first ever permanent international office, inaugurated in 2013. It has since been consolidated as a successful model for the attraction of new sponsors and the creation of a long-lasting connection with Asian fans. During this period, the Club has increased its number of sponsors (from five in 2013 to fourteen at the beginning of 2017) as well as its revenue, to more than €19 million. It has also managed to establish connections with the financial network and social territory that will prove to be highly fruitful in the medium and long term.

This is the Hong Kong office

The 215m2 office is located in the heart of the financial district of Hong Kong, on Queen's Road Central, a strategic location is easily reached by underground, bus and the most common transport methods of the city, such as the ferries that connect the islands and the famous tram.

Directed by Xavier Asensi, FC Barcelona’s headquarters in Hong Kong have a total of 13 people from such places as China, Thailand, South Korea, Hong Kong, Nepal and England, as well as Catalonia. Between them, they can provide attention in ten different languages.

After the visit to the office, Josep Maria Bartomeu will go to the headquarters of the Barça Hong Kong Fan Club, founded in 2015, where he will hold a meeting with representatives of its 218 members. FC Barcelona also has two fans clubs in China: Penya Barcelonista La Gran Muralla (Beijing), and the Penya Ànima Blaugrana (Shanghai).

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