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In major boost for women's sport, global giant LG named title sponsor of new Women's International Baseball Event

posted Nov 17, 2014, 11:51 AM by Jairy Otero


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                        28/29 August 2014





- 'LG Cup 2014', finale broadcast nationally in South Korea via MBC Sports+

- LG partnership and MBC Sport+ broadcast highlight growing appeal of women's sport -- and WBSC's disciplines -- among potential new sponsors and broadcasters, says WBSC's President Riccardo Fraccari.


LAUSANNE, Switzerland -- The world's governing body of baseball and softball, the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC), announced today that South Korea electronics giant LG Electronics (066570: Korea Exchange) has been named the official title sponsor of a new annual international baseball event dedicated entirely to the promotion of women athletes: the LG Cup International Women's Baseball Tournament.


In a partnership between LG, WBSC's baseball division -- the International Baseball Federation -- and the Women's Baseball Association of Korea (WBAK), the inaugural LG Cup 2014 was successfully launched last week and hosted at LG Champions Park, a state-of-the-art sports complex in Incheon, South Korea that features two playing venues and an indoor baseball training facility. (See Photos.)  


The opening contest and championship finale of the LG Cup 2014 were both broadcast nationally in South Korea by cable network MBC Sports+.


Commenting on the title sponsorship and launch of the LG Cup 2014, Bon-joon Koo, vice chairman and CEO of LG Electronics, said:


"LG is proud to take a leadership role in celebrating women's achievements, whether that's in the sports arena, family, or business. We think it's important that women continue to have opportunities to participate and succeed in fields that are traditionally off-limits to them."


Riccardo Fraccari, president of the WBSC said:


"The WBSC is extremely honoured that a global, multinational corporation like LG is committed to offering new and expanded opportunities for women to succeed on the global stage and to inspire and bring more girls and young people to choose sport through WBSC's disciplines.


"The support and sponsorship of an industry leader like LG sends a powerful message about the growing appeal of WBSC's sport disciplines -- and women's sport in particular -- as vehicles to tear down social barriers and stereotypes, while aligning with various business strategies and socially responsible investments."


LG's sponsorship and hosting of the LG Cup also highlights the growing appeal of bat-and-ball sports amongst women, President Fraccari said, with softball being one of the world's most popular sports for women and more women taking up baseball.


"We are working hard to expand opportunities for more women to participate in sport through softball and baseball, and having the support of important sponsors like LG and our many other great sponsors across both disciplines is fundamental to our efforts to maximize access for women to play our sports -- and indeed other sports," President Fraccari said.


WBSC's leadership and sport analysts consider new international baseball and softball events in new regional markets for new audiences, along with new and repeat sponsorship and broadcast agreements, digital marketing programmes, and strong youth appeal and fan experience to be key drivers behind baseball/softball's growing global footprint, and for enhancing the Olympic experience and movement, if the disciplines return to the Olympic programme, pending discussions on the Olympic sports selection process at the IOC Session in Monaco in December.


LG has a long history of supporting women's health and wellness around the world and has implemented such sports activities as a key component of its Corporate Social Responsibility programme.


LG also helped to cover the expenses of a women's baseball club from India, enabling the 22-members to make the journey to South Korea to compete in the inaugural LG Cup.


In total, the LG Cup 2014 united eight elite clubs from seven nations, including Australia, Hong Kong, India, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and the United States.


Through the newest showcase of women's baseball, LG, the WBSC and WBAK hope to create new pathways for women to participate in and benefit from more sports activities -- and to encourage more women from all backgrounds to choose sport and WBSC's disciplines, helping to shape society a sporting landscape that is more relevant and attractive to women. The LG Cup platform also aims to further raise the profile and highlight the achievements and talents of female athletes, while using sport to promote international friendship, respect and excellence.


The recently elected WBSC leadership, under President Fraccari, has made it one of its chief priorities to promote gender-equality and to seek to provide more opportunities for girls and women to be empowered through sports that women like to play and excel at, like baseball/softball -- and to harness the skills and leadership of women across all levels of WBSC's decision-making structure and in society at large.


LG's partnership on the world's newest women's international baseball event follows WBSC's recent announcement that South Korea has been awarded the hosting rights of the 2016 Women's Baseball World Cup. 


Women's sport and women's baseball will continue to be in the spotlight for WBSC next week, when the eight-nation 2014 ENEOS Presents VI Women's Baseball World Cup begins on 1-September in Miyazaki, Japan.


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About LG Electronics, Inc.

LG Electronics, Inc. (KSE: 066570.KS) is a global leader and technology innovator in consumer electronics, mobile communications and home appliances, employing 82,000 people working in 119 locations around the world. With 2013 global sales of USD 53.10 billion (KRW 58.14 trillion), LG comprises five business units -- Home Entertainment, Mobile Communications, Home Appliances, Air Conditioning & Energy Solutions and Vehicle Components -- and is one of the world's leading producers of flat panel TVs, mobile devices, air conditioners, washing machines and refrigerators.

For more LG news and information, please visit  www.LGnewsroom.com.


About the World Baseball Softball Confederation:

Headquartered in the Olympic Capital city of Lausanne, Switzerland, the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) was established in April 2013 and granted recognition as the sole competent authority in baseball and softball by the International Olympic Committee at the 125th IOC Session in September 2013. The WBSC represents a united baseball/softball sports movement that encompasses over 65 million athletes worldwide.


The WBSC governs all international competitions involving any of the National Teams of its 141 National Federation members.  


The WBSC also oversees the Baseball World Cups and Softball World Championships and is the only sports organisation in the world that oversees a U-12 youth national team world championship.


The WBSC currently has National Federation members in 141 countries and territories across Asia, Africa, Americas (Caribbean, Central-, North- and South-America), Europe and Oceania. 


For further information, please go to www.WBSC.co.