The number of athletes looking to expand their brand overseas has grown exponentially since the Jordan era has come and gone.
Los Angeles Laker-legend Kobe Bryant is looking to capitalize on this as his career winds down, starting his transition from superstar basketball player to business mogul as he now he has partnered with the Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba Group to establish the "Bean” brand.
Bryant has his hands in a few projects overseas looking to push Kobe-branded products as well as allowing his name to be attached to a new social media site in China. Alibaba founder and Lakers Super fan Jack Ma had his company release a statement on the new collaboration
“Alibaba Group Holding Limited today announced an agreement with Kobe Inc., a newly formed company by the renowned basketball superstar Kobe Bryant. The Alibaba Group will release Kobe's recent video narrative, Kobe Bryant's Muse, exclusively through Tmall Magic Box on August 8, 2015. In addition, Alibaba Pictures, an affiliate of Alibaba Group, will work with Kobe Inc. to create a series of Kobe branded products and distribute them through Alibaba Group's popular retail platforms including Taobao Marketplace and Tmall.com, which are accessed by over 350 million active buyers throughout China.”
To promote Kobe's personal narrative, Alibaba Group and will collaborate with Kobe Inc. to create a brand new social media platform, bringing new avenues of connecting China's young people directly to Kobe and spreading the name and legacy of Bryant throughout Asia.