The company was founded in 1990 by Li Ning, a former Chinese Olympic gymnast. As of 2015, Li Ning remains the Chairman of the company’s Board of Directors. In 2005, Li-Ning created a joint-venture with French sports apparel company, AIGLE, giving Li-Ning the exclusive right to be the sole distributor of AIGLE’s products in China for 50 years. In 2006, Li-Ning posted revenues of US$418 million, and total profits of about US$39 million. As of March 2007, there were 4,297 Li-Ning retail stores. The company directly owns some of the retail stores while others are franchised.