Black Knight International to introduce Gary Player brand to Greater China and Asia markets through new joint venture…
January 19, 2006 — Amid China’s growing demand for luxury and lifestyle brands, internationally-renowned golf legend Gary Player has formed a joint venture with one of Asia’s most successful businessman, Stan Shih, founder and Chairman Emeritus of the Acer Group, a U.S. $22.2 billion technology and PC vendor. Shih is recognized around the world, particularly in Asia, for his achievements in building a brand business and for his unique management models. In 1989, Fortune Magazine chose Shih as one of "25 People You Ought to Know for Doing Business" in Asia and in 2004 Business Week selected him as one of the "25 Stars of Asia." He is currently Chairman of the Asia Business Council, a group consisting of leading CEO’s from around the globe with business interests in Asia.
Gary Player and Stan Shih announced the joint venture together on Jan. 12th in Shanghai. Both parties formally signed the cooperation agreement whereby Black Knight International and the Stan Shih Group will set up the new company with 50% holdings each. The parties also announced that Eric Shih will serve as the CEO of the Gary Player Group Asia and will work in cooperation with his father to develop the Gary Player brand throughout the region. Gary Player Group Asia will be in charge of licensing the Gary Player ®, Black Knight ®, and Player ® trademarks which may include fashion apparel and accessories, wines, restaurants, travel services, household furnishings, fitness, as well as golf equipment, training aids and academies. The company will also be the exclusive sales agent for Gary Player Design in Asia, the golf course architectural division of Black Knight International. Additionally, Gary Player Group Asia will organize and host charity golf events in the region to benefit The Player Foundation which will support underprivileged education efforts in Asia.
Gary Player expressed that "there is a great development potential for golf in the Asian region, rapidly following the US and European standards. As an ambassador for golf, I hope to lend my assistance to not only build the popularity of the Player brand, but also to help grow the game in this part of the world." Stan Shih stated that "Gary Player is an internationally-renowned legendary golfer. For over 50 years, Mr. Player has won numerous championships throughout the world. The equity in the brand has been established both from Mr. Player’s incredibly competitive golf career as well as the enormous success of Gary Player Design which boasts a portfolio of over 200 courses around the globe and has been rated among the leading brands for bringing value to a golf course/real estate projects." Mr. Shih also pointed out that the Gary Player brand is already popular in the international market and hoped that through this joint venture, the Gary Player brands will successfully enter the Greater China and Asia markets.
Eric Shih vowed that the Shih family was committed to a long-term plan for the brand’s development in the region. "This is not a one or two year project. Brands take many years to develop and mature. The Gary Player brand has tremendous development opportunity and my father and I are committed over the long-term to make the brand one of the formidable luxury brands in the Greater China and Asian marketplaces."
Marc Player, CEO of Black Knight International stated, "We chose to partner with Stan Shih not only because of his tremendous business success in building the Acer brand around the world, but because of his reputation in the Asian business community as a man of the highest honor and integrity. This is the foundation of the cooperation between the two parties."
Black Knight International, USA
+1 561 624 0300
Gary Player Group, Asia
+2 2767 0212 ext. 11