Information contained in the news release is current as of the date of announcement.
It is subject to change without prior notice.

September 26, 2001
Pioneer Corporation
Tohoku Pioneer Corporation

PIONEER TO SPONSOR 2001 BEIJING INTERNATIONAL MARATHON- 2001 Pioneer Beijing International Marathon - Sunday, October 14, 2001

Pioneer Corporation (Head office: Meguro-ku, Tokyo; President Kaneo Ito) has become the title sponsor of the Beijing International Marathon hosted by the Athletics Association of the People's Republic of China, which will be held in Beijing City, China, on October 14, 2001. As a result, the event will be held under the title, "2001 Pioneer Beijing International Marathon".

Tohoku Pioneer Corporation (Head office: Tendo City, Yamagata Prefecture; President: Soichi Ishijima) will also support the marathon as a sponsor.

The entire Pioneer Group has actively pursued business in China, mainly in the expansion of its production facilities. Major developments include the establishment of many local subsidiaries, including the Shanghai Pioneer Speakers Co., Ltd., an affiliated company of Tohoku Pioneer Corporation, in 1993.

In August this year, a new factory for Pioneer Technology (Dongguan) Co., Ltd. in Dongguan, Guangdong Province began production of DVD-R/RW drives, and full-scale production of DVD players, car CD players and other products is scheduled to commence at Pioneer Technology (Shanghai) Co., Ltd.'s new factory in October. Nor are Pioneer's plans for China limited only to production and marketing. We also plan to transfer technology through research and development and product design, etc. In light of these developments, it was from a desire to enhance the awareness toward the Pioneer brand in China that we made the decision to sponsor the Beijing Marathon.

The Beijing International Marathon is the highest-level marathon event in China, and is endorsed by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) and the Association of International Marathons and Road Races (AIMS). Held every year since 1981, this year will be its 21st time.

Japan has a very close association with the Beijing International Marathon. In 1986, Taisuke Kodama (then of Asahi Kasei), recorded the fastest ever time for a Japanese runner for that same year at 2:7:35. This year, Nobuyuki Sato (Asahi Kasei), who ran 2:8:48 at the Fukuoka International Marathon in 1998 is planning to participate.

The Beijing Marathon was formerly seen as an elite marathon, but in 1998, the time limit was extended from three hours to five hours, allowing ordinary runners to compete for the first time. The number of entry categories has also been increased, and last year, 15,000 athletes from all over the world took part, about 100 of whom were from Japan.

The event attracts a great deal of interest from the Chinese population, with many layperson runners also taking part. The marathon is broadcast live on Channel 5, the dedicated sports channel of China Central Television (CCTV). It will also be broadcast in Japan on TV Tokyo and BS Japan (October 14, 14:30-15:56).

< 2001 Pioneer Beijing International Marathon Event Details >

•Name of Event: 2001 Pioneer Beijing International Marathon
(In China, "2001 Pioneer Beijing International Marathon")
•Date and Time: Sunday, October 14, 2001
Start: 8:31 a.m. (rain or shine; time limit: 5 hours)
(Japan time: Sunday, October 14, 2001 Start: 9:31 a.m.)
•Entry Categories Men's and Women's Full Marathon (42.195 km)
Men's and Women's Half Marathon
Men's and Women's 10km Marathon
Men's and Women's Mini Marathon
•Organizer: Athletics Association of the People's Republic of China
•Title Sponsor: Pioneer Corporation
•Sponsors: Tohoku Pioneer Corporation, others
•Co-organizer: Beijing Sports Bureau, China Central Television, others
•Number of runners: 15,000 in 2000 (100 Japanese)

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