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September 21, 2017

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Taiwan Beer serves up tennis ace endorsement

TAIPEI -- Taiwanese tennis star Hsieh Su-wei has reached a preliminary agreement with Taiwan Tobacco & Liquor Co. (TTLC) to endorse Taiwan Beer.

The deal, which will reportedly pay Hsieh NT$5 million (US$167,712) a year, could be signed by the end of the month at the earliest, TTLC Chairman Hsu An-hsuan said Tuesday.

Under the agreement, Hsieh will wear the Taiwan Beer logo during her matches and shoot commercials pitching the product.

Hsieh's visibility skyrocketed after she became the first Taiwanese to win a Grand Slam tennis title when she and partner Peng Shuai of China won the women's doubles title at Wimbledon earlier this month.

No sooner had she won the title, however, than her father spoke publicly of the high costs of playing professional tennis and the lack of sponsorship Hsieh had received in Taiwan, even hinting that she could become a Chinese citizen in exchange for the right deal.

Hsieh later dismissed the possibility of a change in nationality, and she was clearly upbeat after the possibility of securing an endorsement deal with a domestic company moved closer to becoming a reality.

"I'm happy to endorse Taiwanese enterprises, and I hope more of them will sponsor athletes so that they have an easier time pursuing their professional career," Hsieh said.

"Taiwanese companies can also increase their profile internationally."

Hsu expected the partnership to help TTLC because Hsieh will play several tournaments in some of the company's key target markets, including China and Southeast Asia, in the next year.

The deal will also help Hsieh cover the NT$4 million-NT$5 million her father said she has to spend every year on travel, coaches and trainers, and other training expenses.

Prior to capturing her Wimbledon title, Hsieh was earning NT$1.5 million a year through endorsement deals with domestic companies.

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