Business representatives for U.S. professional basketball star Yao Ming are contesting efforts by a south China businessman to register Yao's name for use as a brand of female sanitary napkin.
China's official news agency, Xinhua, says a Guangdong province businessman Xiao Senwen wants to use Yao's name to market a number of other products as well, including diapers, sportswear, beer and metalware.
But Yao's business partners in China tell Xinhua the registration took them by surprise because it includes women's personal items.
They say they plan to raise an objection. Yao's name has been registered as a brand in China several times in the past.
Under Chinese law, newly registered brands take immediate effect if no objection is raised.
Xinhua reports that fans of the basketball star have logged complaints on the Internet about the registration, calling it indecent and inappropriate.
Yao Ming is a Chinese national who plays for the National Basketball Association's Houston (Texas) Rockets.