Japan’s Meiji Yasuda Life Insurance Company has become the title sponsor of the J.League, the Japanese national football league.
A spokesman for the life insurer confirmed the development and told Life Insurance International the deal was part of its promotional strategy in Japan.

The deal reportedly entitles the insurer to naming rights to the top three tiers of domestic Japanese soccer, expanding an agreement signed in 2013 that gave the company naming rights to the newly-formed third tier, the J3.
Soccerex reported that although contractual details have not been released, it has been described as one of the biggest sponsorship deals ever within Japan.

Meiji Yasuda is the third largest life insurer in Japan, according to the report Life Insurance in Japan, Key Trends and Opportunities to 2017, which is available at Timetric’s Insurance Intelligence Center.

This report explains that Japan’s life segment is mature, highly competitive and its penetration rate of 6.7% was higher than the global average of 4% in 2012.

For the six months ended 30 September 2014, Meiji Yasuda generated premium income and reinsurance refunds of1.8trn yen. ($15.3bn).It said this decrease was mainly due to the continued tightening of sales of single premium whole life insurance in the bancassurance channel.

As of 30 September 2014, the company had 29,595 sales personnel and 74 regional offices.

In May 2014, Meiji Yasuda Life Insurance Company launched a new product called Best Style. This was its main product revision in 14 years and from May to 30 September the insurer said it had sold 200,000 Best Style policies in the period.

Among the product’s features, it includes a "quick-check for coverage needs" to ensure that insurance proposals are in response to customer needs.