German electronics manufacturer Siemens has signed a deal to sponsor seven China football teams, including the men's and women's national teams. Details of the contract were not disclosed but Rudi Lamprecht, head of Siemens Mobile, said that the move was part of a campaign to increase handset sales in China, which accounts for about 20 per cent of the company's sales worldwide. Its market share has fallen to 7.8 per cent from 14.5 per cent two years ago and the company is planning to issue a range of new models in order to boost sales.
According to Ministry of Information Industry statistics, Siemens Mobile last year sold 2.91m GSM phones in the country. Motorola topped the league with sales of 18.72m units, followed by Nokia's 11.35m. Local vendors such as Ningbo Bird and TCL International's mobile arm also outperformed Siemens by selling 6.78m and 5.91m units sold, respectively.