Tokyo, November 27, 2020 - Rakuten, Inc. today announced the signing of a global management deal with Yuki Kawamura, who plays for the Seagulls, the Tokai University men’s basketball team. This is the first time a university basketball team player has ever been signed to a management contract with a company in Japan.
- Rakuten, Inc.
Rakuten Signs Management Deal with Rising Basketball Star Yuki Kawamura
Since Kawamura started playing basketball at the age of 6, he has always been a point guard. He attended Fukuoka Daiichi High School, a leading sports school, where his team won the national championship four times, two of which were successive Winter Cup victories. This propelled his selection to the team’s Best Five. In January 2020, he was recruited by the B.League’s San-en NeoPhoenix under the Special Designated Player system. There, he broke records as the youngest player ever to appear or score in a B.League game, winning him a Top Five New Players Award. In October, Kawamura was chosen as one of Forbes Japan’s “30 Under 30 Japan 2020.” He is regarded as a leader in the next generation of Japanese sports stars.
Under this contract, Rakuten will build Kawamura’s brand and support his athletic career through sponsorship acquisitions and other initiatives. Rakuten has already developed a global sports network through a variety of initiatives including partnerships with the NBA and the Golden State Warriors, management of the Japanese professional soccer club Vissel Kobe and brand support for star Vissel Kobe player Andrés Iniesta. By harnessing its network and branding expertise, Rakuten will provide comprehensive support for Kawamura in his professional activities as an athlete.
Yuki Kawamura commented, “I like what Rakuten is doing for the sport of basketball and its mission to empower people through sports, which led to this management deal. Together with Rakuten, I aim to become a player that both surprises and inspires people, and I look forward to inspiring fans and society as a whole with my performance on the court and by taking on new challenges.”
As part of its missions to empower people through sport, Rakuten will continue to support promising young athletes and pursue a variety of initiatives that contribute to the further development of the world of sports.
Born: May 2, 2001 in Yamaguchi Prefecture, Japan (19 years old)
Height: 172 cm
Weight: 68 kg
Position: Point guard
Teams: Fukuoka Daiichi High School, San-en NeoPhoenix (Special Designated Player), Tokai University