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Under Armour launches Curry Two in China, opens Brand House in Shanghai

National Basketball Association (NBA) Golden State Warriors and 2014-2015 season Most Valuable Player (MVP) Stephen Curry (R) arrives before taking part in a drill with young players in Manila on September 5, 2015. Curry started his three-nation (Japan, China and Philippines) Under Armour Asia tour to promote the company's limited edition basketball shoes, "UA Curry II."
National Basketball Association (NBA) Golden State Warriors and 2014-2015 season Most Valuable Player (MVP) Stephen Curry (R) arrives before taking part in a drill with young players in Manila on September 5, 2015. Curry started his three-nation (Japan, China and Philippines) Under Armour Asia tour to promote the company's limited edition basketball shoes, "UA Curry II." (Noel Celis)

Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank and NBA star Stephen Curry have wrapped up a whirlwind, five-city, five-day tour of Asia, where the Under Armour athlete appeared before cheering fans in packed arenas and malls and unveiled his latest Under Armour shoe.

The Golden State Warriors guard, met by cheers of "MVP," showed off the the new signature Curry Two basketball shoe, praising it as lightweight, supportive, comfortable and "a very, very good shoe."

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He and Plank headlined what the company called the Under Armour Roadshow. They landed in Tokyo Sept. 4, then headed to Manila before visiting three cities in China, Beijing, Chongqing and Shanghai.

In that city's downtown, Curry helped open a new, 15,000-square-foot Under Armour Brand House store.

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"I want to say thank you to all my Chinese fans out there," Curry said during one stop. "You've welcomed me with open arms, and I'm happy to bring belief, inspiration and courage to every single one of you, whether you're playing basketball or not."

It's not surprising Under Armour would appeal to basketball fans in China, the heart of the growing consumer market in Asia that's home to more than 60 Under Armour stores with more on the way.

During a special meeting of shareholders Aug. 26, Plank said he aspires to grow the basketball business alone to $1 billion as the company looks to spread internationally.

"Being a global company is the way we think about life," Plank told shareholders during the meeting at the Locust Point headquarters, noting that its apparel and footwear was sold in more than 62 countries at the and of last year. "We expect to be a global business brand."

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lorraine.mirabella@baltsun.com

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