Aug 10, 2011 at 02:15 PM
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Solar Company Makes A Play For U.S. Market Share With New Soccer Deal

Not satisfied with being a sponsor of the FIFA World Cup and FC Bayern Munich, Yingli Green Energy is extending its soccer sponsorship to the States. Today it announced a multi-year agreement with U.S. Soccer that establishes Yingli Green Energy as the first Official Renewable Energy Partner of U.S. Soccer and the U.S. Men's, Women's, and Youth National Teams through the end of 2014. The partnership will launch during tonight's U.S. Men's National Team match versus Mexico at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia.

In explaining the deal, Yingli says the growth of solar power throughout the U.S. charts a "similar trajectory" as the National Teams' popularity. Since 2007, it says solar PV installations in the U.S. have grown by 527 percent.

"Soccer is the world's most popular game and we are extremely excited to be partnering with U.S. Soccer, an organization that has achieved tremendous success and similar global recognition in recent years," said Mr. Robert Petrina, Managing Director of Yingli Americas, a fully-owned subsidiary of Yingli Green Energy. "We consider this association to be the best platform for building solar energy awareness across the country. We recently announced that we are on track to capture 15 percent of the North American solar market in 2011, and today we're reinforcing our commitment to build a lasting brand and a recognizable local presence."

As part of the deal, Yingli Green Energy will provide solar energy for local athletic centers in disadvantaged communities across the U.S. <> "We are looking forward to our new partnership with Yingli Green Energy through 2014," said U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati. "Working closely with a leading renewable energy company will give us the opportunity to enhance our social and environmental activities through a number of different initiatives over the next few years."

"This is a special time for soccer in America, when the soccer community is energized about the game's future," said Mr. Liansheng Miao, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Yingli Green Energy. "We are similarly excited about the potential for the solar industry, and we are pleased to be partnering with U.S. Soccer to help advance opportunities for both soccer and renewable energy throughout this important market."