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Case Study

Wanda's 2018 FIFA World Cup™ activation

2 min read

As a FIFA Official Partner until 2030, the Wanda Group, a leading Chinese conglomerate, showcases its commitment to the sustainable growth of the sport and to a lasting partnership. Complementing FIFA, the aim is clear: team up to inspire the next generation of football fans whilst providing fans with enriching experiences.

Together with Wanda's business units, Infront designed and implemented a wide range of activation programmes, led by an onsite team of 50+ members across all Host Cities.


Wanda took 384 children between the ages of 12 and 17-among which over 200 from China-to Russia. They acted as flag bearers, carrying FIFA flags onto the pitch before each game during the 2018 FIFA World Cup™. Among them were children from less-developed areas in China, such as Danzhai county in Southwest China's Guizhou province, and young Chinese players from Wanda's Future Football Stars program.


Through Wanda's Tour Operator programme, Wanda was responsible for flying over 9,000 Chinese football fans to the World Cup matches. Infront worked together with Wanda's in-house travel agency to coordinate the planning and ticketing elements for this programme. Infront also managed 13,000 Wanda contractual tickets, including the full strategy, collection, delivery and onsite management.


To take fans on a journey through Wanda's world of football, Infront designed the 'VR Superstar' experience. The experience mirrored that of a youngster growing up in Wanda's Danzhai Village playing football in the street and then the magical moment when the player turns into a football star and takes to the pitch at the fabulous Wanda Metropolitano stadium in Madrid. The VR Superstar experience entertained 3,295 fans at the stadium fan zone at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow and the Fan Park in the iconic Red Square. Daily prizes included match tickets and exclusive opportunities such as a post-match pitch-side selfie on the team benches.

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Wanda provided its guests and clients with high-level hospitality at the Wanda 'MyPlace' area, which entertained over 450 guests at the five biggest matches at the Luzhniki stadium. This was a fully Wanda-branded space, which held 170 guests for the Final Match and also hosted a media day where Wanda Sports Group CEO and FIFA's Chief Commercial Officer Philippe Le Floc'h spoke to media about Wanda's first World Cup. In addition to the MyPlace area, Infront installed Wanda branding in the skyboxes at selected FIFA World Cup™ stadia, where smaller groups of guests were entertained in a Wanda environment.


  • Once-in-a-lifetime experiences for football fans: 384 children travelled to Russia as flag bearers; 9,000 flew over from China as part of Wanda's Tour Operator Programme.
  • 13,000 Wanda contractual tickets were managed by Infront, including the full strategy, collection, delivery and onsite management.
  • The cutting-edge VR Superstar experience entertained over 3,000 fans onsite.
  • Wanda's MyPlace hospitality hosted 1000 VIP guests across the 64 matches
  • Wanda branding on LED boards reached a global viewership of more than 3 billion