Sports centre bids for better mascot promotion

Posted by samakomlao Tuesday, November 17, 2009

The Stadium Sports Centre wants approval from the Vientiane Urban Development Administration Authority to promote the 25th SEA Games mascots in the lead up to the event, saying not enough people are familiar with the mascots and what they stand for.

The centre is responsible for distributing souvenirs and products promoting the games, and wants to promote the mascots to local and foreign visitors at major spots in central Vientiane .

The centre's manager Mr Viengsavanh Sengchanh told the press on Monday people might know a little from neighbouring media about the games, but the mascots had not received nearly as much attention as mascots in previous years.

The centre has allowed vendors from the provinces to bring products to sell in the run-up to the games.

Clothes have become popular products among customers, but the mascots were not attracting much attention because they had not been advertised well, Mr Viengsavanh said.

“The price of the mascots is reasonable. We sell small ones for 65,000 kip and big ones for 85,000 kip. I think most people don't know what they represent, while others are just buying them for their families in other countries,” he said.

Mr Viengsavanh said promotion of the SEA Games in some provinces was inadequate, and that people in Laos didn't even know the mascots existed.

“The games start in less than two weeks so we would like to see stalls and signs to promote the games,” he said.

The centre reported that products, including clothes, hats and other souvenirs, were being well received by shoppers from the central and other provinces.

Some customers told local press they thought the goods on sale were very expensive, with a normal shirt with a SEA Games logo priced at 50,000 kip, but the manager rejected the claim and said the shirt cost only 30,000 kip.

“Some businesses buy the goods from us and sell them at their shops for a higher price,” he said.

“Champassak is the leading province in which many of the SEA Games clothing is distributed, while people in Khammuan, Borikhamxay, Xieng Khuang and Luang Prabang provinces have also bought many items. But most of the items being sold aren't the mascots,” Mr Viengsavanh said.

He said the target for selling products, souvenirs and mascots was 30 million baht or more than US$900,000 (more than 7.6 billion kip).

Some of the goods were presented as gifts to the SEA Games Organising Committee but were not of high enough quality for distribution.

Mr Viengsavanh added that signs would help them to sell their products and achieve their target, in particular mascot sales.

By Souknilundon Southivongnorath

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