MAJOR LEAGUE EATING LAUNCHES MLE ASIA
First event in Singapore; MLE Secures Contract Extensions with ESPN and Nathan’s Famous; Nintendo Wii Game Also Available
Major League Eating has announced that the league will launch MLE Asia, with the inaugural sanctioned event to occur in Singapore this Sunday, July 27th (Saturday, July 26th in America).
The event will take place at the Singapore Food Festival, and will feature the top two eaters in the world, Joey Chestnut of the United States and Takeru Kobayashi of Japan. MLE Asia franchisee, Hairi Soewarso of Thinking Tub, said that the new MLE branch would use the contest as a launching pad to sponsor more events in Asia and the Middle East, supported by the Singapore Tourism Board.
“We believe there is tremendous potential for Major League Eating to become one of the foremost sports franchises in Asia,” Mr. Soewarso said.
“We look forward to expanding our reach to the Pacific Rim, which has already produced some of the greatest eaters in the history of the sport,” said Major League Eating Chairman George Shea.
Expansion into Asia marks yet another signal that Major League Eating is fast becoming a legitimate sports franchise. Earlier this month, MLE extended its agreements with Nathan’s Famous and July Fourth broadcast partner ESPN through the year 2012. In addition, the league recently launched ‘MLE: The Game,’ now available on Nintendo WiiWare. The franchise is currently in talks regarding both television and film productions, and plans to expand its efforts in licensing and merchandising.
Major League Eating (MLE), the world governing body of all stomach-centric sports, conducts more than 80 events annually, including the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest. The competitive eating community, which numbers more than 6,000 veteran and rookie athletes, travels the nation in search of top titles and the glory that they provide. Since last Thanksgiving, MLE has raised over $45,000.00 for hunger related charities such as Second Harvest and the Food Bank for New York City.