Nissan’s premium brand Infiniti courts NBA’s Stephen Curry

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BEIJING (Reuters) - Japanese automaker Nissan Motor Co Ltd’s premium brand Infiniti will announce a marketing agreement with U.S. basketball star Stephen Curry on Wednesday, according to a company statement seen by Reuters.

In his first campaign for the company, the point guard for NBA champions the Golden State Warriors would feature in advertisements for the redesigned Infiniti Q50 flagship sports sedan, due for a launch around the world from August, the statement said.

The campaign including television would be rolled out in the United States, China and other markets to coincide with the launch. Nissan is expected to publicly announce the campaign later on Wednesday.

“The U.S. is our biggest market and China is our biggest growth market, so partnering with Mr. Curry ... is a great way to reach consumers around the world in an authentic way,” said Roland Krueger, head of Infiniti, in a statement.

Curry has won two NBA Championships with the Golden State Warriors. He is a two-time NBA Most Valuable Player, four-time NBA All-Star and the NBA leading scorer in 2016. Curry was also named the Associated Press Male Athlete of the Year in 2016.

For the Chinese market, where Infiniti lags far behind Germany’s three main premium brands BMW, Audi VOWG_p.DE and Mercedes-Benz, as well as its home-market rival Lexus, the Japanese premium brand is expected to launch a long-wheel-base version of the new sedan.

Infiniti last year sold more than 76,000 Q50 cars globally. It sold about 44,000 in the United States and 19,000 in China.

Reporting by Norihiko Shirouzu in Beijing; Editing by Stephen Coates