ITOCHU Announces Launch of Fan Building Support Business Targeted at Athletes and Sports Teams

March 1, 2021

ITOCHU Corporation (headquartered in Minato-ku, Tokyo; Yoshihisa Suzuki, President & COO; hereinafter “ITOCHU”) announced today that it is launching fanbase-building support business targeted at athletes and sports teams through its new, wholly owned subsidiary, CiRCuS Co, Ltd.(hereinafter " CiRCuS ").

Although the size of the domestic sports market had been increasing every year, beginning last year, the COVID-19 pandemic has forced the postponement and cancellation of many sports competitions and games, with serious repercussions for the market. This has greatly affected leagues, teams, and also individual athletes, and some of them are finding it difficult to continue playing.
At present, athletes and teams communicate with their fans mainly through social media, which greatly helps them attract fans. However, this also exposes them to the risk of threats and harassment by people other than their fans and, at the same time, they must themselves develop websites that generate income from the fans.

Today ITOCHU has launched CiRCuSFan, its website helping athletes and sports teams build their fan bases with the goal of expanding the domestic sports market and improving the sports environment in Japan.
CiRCuSFan enables both professional and amateur athletes or teams to easily create their own fan sites*1 with no monthly usage fees and distribute exclusive content and messages to their fans in a closed environment. It also enables fans to join their favorite sports teams' and athletes' fan sites for a fee and communicate with the athletes and teams through online events that not possible on social media and other features. CiRCuSFan makes it possible for fans to easily support athletes and teams in many ways including digital gifts.

ITOCHU transforms business through its "market-in" approach, which is a basic policy included its next medium-term management plan, and this effort is in line with this policy. Moving forward, ITOCHU will contribute to the expansion of the domestic sports market over the medium to long term through the provision of consulting services to build fan engagement with sports associations and sports teams and support for their DX in collaboration with ITOCHU Group and partner companies, in addition to active solicitation of athletes' and sports teams' participation in CiRCuSFan and the promotion of their expansion of fan support.

  • *1To be screened by the administration office

CiRCuSFan service logo

CiRCuSFan website

CiRCuSFan (Japanese)

Overview of CiRCuS Co., Ltd.

Address 2-5-1 Kita-Aoyama, Minato-ku, Tokyo
Representative Takayuki Takegami
Established March 2021
Business Activities Fan engagement business
URL (Japanese)