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Borussia Dortmund plan another Asian tour, expand Singapore links

German Bundesliga giants Borussia Dortmund will return to Asia for the third time in three years in 2017 as they look to grow their footprint in the continent.

Dortmund, who opened up an office in Singapore in 2014, sunk their roots deeper in the country on Thursday after signing a five-year partnership with sports and entertainment company, Orientivity.

They announced that they would be making an Asian tour in mid-2017, during the European close season, with details of countries and specific matches yet to be finalised.

The agreement is aimed at developing football in Asia, especially in Singapore, with Orientivity looking to tap into Dortmund's expertise for nurturing youth. They have groomed famous names like Mario Gotze and Marcel Schmelzer, as well as rising American star Christian Pulisic.

Speaking at the signing ceremony held at Singapore's Fullerton Hotel, Carsten Cramer, BVB's director for sales and marketing, explained the continued push to expose the Bundesliga giants to more Asian audiences.

"We are a football club, not an English business that happens to play football," he said with regards to the difference between Dortmund and big English clubs, whose activities in other parts of the world are often viewed more as business ventures.

"It's more than being about just coming here, and asking for a high fee to play a friendly.

"We're coming back to Asia again next summer - This has to be something sustainable.

"Having our office in Singapore clearly sent a message out to the global football industry that Singapore is indeed a fantastic location and an ideal platform to promote and raise the BVB brand into the other Asian markets.

"A partner like Orientivity creates that diversity which would enable a club like us to tap into their resources and local knowledge regionally."

Under the partnership, Dortmund will work with Orientivity to hold football clinics, as well as summer and winter camps, both in designated Asian countries as well as in Germany.

Around 200 children will get the chance to earn a training stint at Dortmund annually, with an international youth football tournament also in the pipeline.

Zheng Le, managing director of Orientivity, said: "Our vision is to develop football for Asia and that can be a long-term process.

"As we have seen with the recent example of Pulisic, Borussia Dortmund is a club that nurtures its own talent and we find that their philosophy matches with ours.

"With Borussia Dortmund's reputation and expertise, Singapore football can greatly benefit from this partnership which will provide exposure for Singaporeans, especially youngsters, to participate in football activities here and overseas."

Touching specifically on the youths that will get the chance at the Dortmund Brackel Training Ground, Cramer added: "I believe the 200 kids that come here will leave with this club forever in their hearts."