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Vatti shares surge despite Cup payout

SHENZHEN-LISTED Vatti surged 4 percent today, despite the Chinese home appliance firm preparing to pay 79 million yuan (US$12 million) in refunds after France won the World Cup.

Vatti promised in June that consumers would be fully refunded for buying related kitchen products if the French soccer team won the World Cup. The company is an official sponsor of the French soccer team.

France celebrated their second World Cup win in 20 years on Sunday, overcoming Croatia 4-2 in one of the most gripping finals of recent history.

The company said the total cost, including refunds and related spending, is 79 million yuan, still “limited” compared with the 1 to 2 billion yuan for official sponsorship of the World Cup.

Vatti’s share price jumped 3.97 percent to close at 15.18 yuan, compared with a 0.10 percent decrease of the Shenzhen index yesterday.

For any purchase of a “champion package” in June, Vatti promised a full refund if France won, covering a set of four kitchen appliances worth 16,100 yuan.

The first customer applying for a refund was in Taiyuan City in Shanxi Province early yesterday morning, just after the France-Croatia match ended about 1am.

The whole refund process will last for “several weeks,” with processes covering application, authorization and refunds.

Online orders will be easier as consumers can receive automatic refunds to their accounts, Vatti said.

During the whole event, Vatti’s offline sales revenue jumped 20 percent year-on-year to hit 700 million yuan, the company said.

Other Chinese companies like Oppo and Mengniu sponsored stars in Brazil and Argentina.

Vatti’s sponsorship seems relatively valuable in terms of brand awareness, analysts said.

More than 1 million people read the refund post of Vatti’s official WeChat account within 30 minutes.