Sunderland AFC has announced TLC88.com as the Asian betting and gaming partner officially for the club.
The partnership represents the first sponsorship venture in Asia for the club and it is seen as part of giving the football club an international appeal.
An initial two year deal has been agreed between the two parties and the website will offer exclusive bets for a range of activities online alongside football betting odds.
Sunderland AFC’s international marketing director Mike Farnan was quick to praise the deal as he went to say “This echoes our commitment to partnering with top line international brands and we are delighted with the partnership.”
The club declare the deal on a week where their North East rivals Newcastle announced a controversial new shirt sponsorship deal for the 2013/14 season with pay day lenders Wonga.
The morality of the deal could similarly be brought into questions with TLC88.com offering people across Asia the opportunity to bet in play on Barclays Premier League football as well as online casinos and gaming.
Mike Chong, Asia Pacific Strategy Director for www.TLC88.com, was quick to dismiss these fears adding “We believe that our knowledge of developing fun, interactive and engaging platforms will provide Sunderland’s international fan base with an exciting, new gaming experience.”
Now that a deal has been made to broaden Sunderland’s appeal away from England, they will be looking to deal with domestic matters in hand. Next up they welcome visitors Newcastle United to the Stadium of Light and there will be no love lost between the sides, when the sides clash on Sunday.