Tokyo, March 26, 2018 – Rakuten, Inc. today announced that it has become the official partner of FCBEscola, the flagship FC Barcelona school offering training in the renowned Barça methodology of football to children in more than 20 countries around the world. Commencing with the school’s annual international tournament, the “FCBEscola International Tournament presented by Rakuten” in Barcelona March 26-29, Rakuten and FCBEscola will embark on exciting new initiatives to empower football-loving children globally.
Rakuten’s partnership with FCBEscola is the latest initiative to arise out of its powerful relationship with legendary soccer club FC Barcelona, for which it became the Main Global Partner and the first-ever Official Innovation & Entertainment Partner from July 1, 2017.
Rakuten’s support of FCBEscola will help take the school to the next level, boosting its brand recognition globally and enabling further growth. Those efforts start with the FCBEscola International Tournament presented by Rakuten, which this year will see some 172 teams from an expected 45 schools, up from 33 in 2017, gather in Barcelona to determine which team will be crowned the champions of the 2017-2018 season.
Rakuten’s support of FC Barcelona initiatives stems from a strong belief in the power of sports to bring people together and unite the world by transcending language, cultural and regional barriers. Rakuten is proud to support FCBEscola as it represents an initiative that aims to bring together children, their parents, coaches and supporters from around the world to create a more optimistic future. Through the initiative, Rakuten hopes to empower, inspire, and fulfil the dreams of young soccer players.
Rakuten Arena, Rakuten’s sports and entertainment social media channel will be providing live coverage of the tournament’s four championship matches. Games will be broadcast for friends, family and football fans the world over, on https://www.facebook.com/RakutenArena/
The tournament will also see the creation of the FCBEscola Rakuten Cup, which will be presented to the winning teams. The award reflects Rakuten’s commitment to fostering a spirit of creative innovation in younger generations.
Rakuten’s commitment to FCBEscola will accelerate in the 2018-19 season, which commences from April. In Japan, a new school has been created in Nara Prefecture and will start classes next month. Rakuten will also support the two existing Japanese branches of Escola, in Katsushika City, Tokyo, and Fukuoka Prefecture. Students at all three schools in Japan will be issued Escola uniforms complete with Rakuten branding.
Rakuten is also planning to offer special training and unique development opportunities for FCBEscola students in the future.
FCBEscola is one of the largest football schools in the world, with branches operated under license in more than 20 countries. Each school is assigned a dedicated technical director from Barcelona who oversees tuition to children aged 6-18 years in the Barça methodology, which includes a creative and attacking brand of football and the promotion of positive values such as respect, effort, ambition, teamwork and humility.
Official website: https://fcb-escola.fcbarcelona.com/
About the FCBEscola International Tournament presented by Rakuten
Held once a year at the conclusion of the FCBEscola season, the FCBEscola International Tournament presented by Rakuten features teams from Escola schools all over the world competing in a round-robin tournament to determine the best team in each of four different age groups: U8, U10, U12 and U14. Details of this year’s tournament are as follows:
Dates: March 26-29
Number of participants: 1,900 (representing 45 schools from 22 countries)
Age range: 6-14 years (to be divided into four age groups)
Venue: Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper and Miniestadi pitches. Final to be held at Miniestadi, adjacent to Camp Nou.
About FCBEscola in Japan
Escola currently works with licensees in Katsushika and Fukuoka and a third Escola in Japan, in Nara, is scheduled to commence classes in April 2018.