Arsenal Gets Cheated By Chinese Conman

In April 2018, Arsenal announced a global agreement with the world’s best-selling electric vehicle manufacturer, BYD Auto, to become the club's official car and bus partner. Now it has emerged that the Arsenal deal with China-based BYD (Build Your Dreams) was not signed with the carmaker.

The deal Arsenal signed with BYD was not between the official carmaker and the club but with a person illegally conducted marketing activities in BYD’s name over the past three years, and signed deals involving dozens of partner.

The Chinese carmaker says it was duped by a person posing as an employee who signed unauthorized contracts with advertising partners. BYD Co., an electric-car maker backed by Warren Buffett, asked the police to investigate a person who it says damaged its reputation and harmed related parties. Arsenal, which announced a pact with BYD in April, says the carmaker informed the English Premier League club that the deal was among those potentially affected by a fraud.

The person isn’t an employee and never has been, and BYD hasn’t authorized the person to conduct business in its name, the Shenzhen-based company said in a statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange Monday. The carmaker also said it reported to the police a forged company seal, which may have been used to stamp contracts that the person awarded.

BYD originally disclosed some details of the case last month, and on July 12 it said in a statement on Chinese social media that “with the deepening of understanding, BYD believes that this incident has a greater impact on the advertising media industry and will cause greater losses to related companies.”

Arsenal said it is investigating the situation while talking to senior management of BYD. A spokesman for the club declined to comment beyond the statement.

BYD fell 5.7 percent in Hong Kong, the biggest drop since March 28.
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