STRI Group announce Chinese partnership

Turf. Image: Pixabay

STRI Group has taken a major step into the Chinese sports turf market after striking an agreement with Beijing iRENA Group and Shanghai KeHua Sports Promotional Co. to improve football pitches across China.

The Yorkshire-based global sports turf consultants and research specialists have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with intent to work alongside the Chinese businesses to help improve sports surfaces across all levels of facility within China.

Beijing iRENA Group and Shanghai KeHua Sports Promotional Co. have a detailed understanding of the sports industry and of operating facilities within the country. For example, Shanghai KeHua owns and operates Century Park, where Manchester United recently trained in preparation for their International Champions Cup clash with Borussia Dortmund.

Over the past five years, STRI has made significant investments including the development of new research facilities in Australia and Qatar and the launch of design and consultancy hubs in Asia-Pacific and the Middle East.

STRI group director Lee Penrose said: "Through the establishment of this unique relationship, STRI are proud to support President Xi Jinping's vision for the growth of the Chinese football industry. We are committed to a long term future of providing our cutting edge solutions, training and leadership to the local sports surface industry through sharing our international expertise."

Hao Qing of Shanghai KeHua said: "A future partnership with iRENA and STRI represents a significant milestone for the Chinese football industry. The Chinese government wants to build 60,000 new football pitches in China, so the co-operation with the world's leading sports turf research, design and consulting company presents a significant opportunity to develop European quality football pitches locally. China will now be able to compete for pitch quality on an international stage".

First published on, 22 July 2016, written by Elizabeth Henry