SBD/12/Sponsorships Advertising Marketing

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  • BALLY'S BOSS TAKING ANOTHER PASS AT CAESARS?

         Dan Dorfman reports that Bally Entertainment CEO Arthur
    Goldberg "appears to be coming back to the takeover wars."
    Goldberg is threatening to take over Caesars World. "Wall
    Street's reaction:  ho-hum.  That's despite the fact ... that
    Bally bought more than 1.5% of Caesars' shares."  Bally is also
    seeking the FTC's OK to buy more than 15% of Caesar's stock.
    "Reason for the ho-hum:  Goldberg's lack of credibility among
    many pros.  In brief, he often buys stakes in companies and then
    dumps them after they move up in price."  But Dorfman writes that
    Goldberg -- "aware his credibility is at stake" -- will not walk
    away "easily from his goal of snaring Caesars" (USA TODAY,
    12/12).
    

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  • BRUINS LOGO PLANS "PROCEEDING UNIFORMLY"

         The Bruins have until Thursday to notify the NHL of the
    changes they intend to make to their uniforms.  In Boston, Kevin
    Paul Dupont says to look for a new color to be blended in with
    the traditional black and gold; a white "home" sweater, a black
    "away" sweater and a 3rd sweater for special occasions; and a
    spoked-"B" to remain central to the theme.  Bruins Assistant GM
    Mike O'Connell said a bear motif -- "akin to the biting San Jose
    Shark and the growling Florida Panther -- will be incorporated."
    It could be weeks or months before the public gets a look at the
    new logo (BOSTON GLOBE, 12/11).
    

    Print | Tags: Boston Bruins, NHL
  • FASHION CHANGES, LABOR WOES HAVE APPAREL SALES DOWN

         In St. Louis, Dan O'Neill examines retail sales of licensed
    baseball and hockey apparel, which "are sagging at stores."
    Stores such as No Contest, which is operated by Chicago-based
    Sportmart, have "adjusted to compensate for disappointing sales
    in hockey jerseys and jackets."  Matt Powell, VP/Marketing for No
    Contest: "We've been able to mitigate the drop in hockey and
    baseball by stepping up our assortments in those categories."
    Bob Noblitt, VP of Superstar's, which has stores in St. Louis,
    Chicago and Detroit, notes that the company has "picked up in
    college items."  Powell noted that "a more important change than
    the work stoppages has been a change in the fashion": "Two years
    ago, everybody wanted to wear nothing but licensed apparel.  But
    people are moving away from it."  In-line skates "continue to
    sell well.  Hiking boots have become big and the market for
    sneakers never dies."  Also a new market has emerged for old
    products.  Puma has reissued "Clydes," a basketball shoe
    connected with former Knicks star Walt "Clyde" Frazier.  Chuck
    Taylor All-Stars by Converse "are enjoying a resurgence, as well
    as the Stan Smith tennis shoe" (ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH, 12/10).
         BASEBALL:  Licensing revenue for players is down 14% this
    year, "possibly another indication of fans' anger over the
    baseball strike."  The MLBPA has earned $51.95M in licensing
    money so far this year, down from $60.34M during the first 11
    months of '93 (Toronto GLOBE & MAIL, 12/10).
         A ST. LOUIS NOTE:  Among the "hot" NFL items in St. Louis is
    a Jerome Bettis Rams jersey.  Also, the labor problems in hockey
    "couldn't be worse for stores that anticipated big sales on Blues
    merchandise this shopping season" (Dan O'Neill, ST. LOUIS POST-
    DISPATCH, 12/10).
         SUPERSTORES: In New York, Douglas Martin examines the advent
    of "superstores" in NYC: the "category killers, who sell
    basically one type of merchandise, be it books, apparel, linen or
    electronic goods" (N.Y. TIMES, 12/11).
         CREDIT CARDS:  MasterCard Int'l reported a record $3.7B in
    U.S. sales authorizations for the second week of the holiday
    shopping season, an increase of 27% from a year ago (WASHINGTON
    TIMES, 12/12).
    

    Print | Tags: Cablevision, Converse, Dallas Stars, MasterCard, New York Knicks, NFL, Puma, Southwest Sports Group, St. Louis Blues, St. Louis Rams
  • FOX SPORTS AND MCI LAUNCH AN INTERACTIVE TOUR

         Fox Sports and MCI's 1-800-COLLECT are targeting a "young,
    techno-literate demo in a promotion called the Virtual Reality
    Tour starting this month adjacent to football and music events."
    Patty Proferes, Dir of 1-800-COLLECT: "We think this will extend
    our brand personality.  We're looking to be fresh and new, and
    virtual reality is the buzz right now."  1-800-COLLECT has
    committed to a 12-month "stint with the traveling fest."  On tour
    is a 50-foot tractor-trailer that contains two virtual reality
    experiences.  The virtual reality truck, which was outside the
    Chargers-49ers game yesterday and the Billboard Music Awards last
    week, will be in Washington, DC, on Sunday for the Buccaneers-
    Redskins game, and at the Georgia Dome for the Falcons-Cardinals
    Arizona on Christmas Eve.  The tour will eventually travel to Fox
    affiliates across the country, "making appearances at special
    events and provided opportunities for local cross-promotions"
    (T.L. Standley, BRANDWEEK, 12/12 issue).
    

    Print | Tags: Atlanta Falcons, News Corp./Fox, San Diego Chargers, San Francisco 49ers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Washington Redskins
  • MARKETPLACE ROUND-UP

         Sun Apparel Inc., a leading jeanswear manufacturer,
    announced the signing of its latest representation agreement for
    the newly launched X-PRO Jeans brand, targeted to men over 40.
    Former NBA great John Havilcek will team up with "Mean" Joe
    Greene and baseball great Luis Tiant to represent X-PRO.  The
    print ad campaigns debut in March '95 (Sun Apparel)....In New
    York, John Markoff profiles 3DO Company, the new video game
    manufacturer, under the subhead: "A video game entrepreneur finds
    that superior technology has yet to translate into profits."  He
    notes that some analysts wonder whether the company will still be
    "in business" by next Christmas (N.Y. TIMES, 12/11).  USA TODAY's
    "Cover Story" profiles the move by video game companies into
    television, beginning with Sega's partnership with TCI and Time
    Warner to launch the Sega Channel (USA TODAY, 12/12).
    

    Print | Tags: NBA
  • NFL ADDS SKILLS COMPETITION TO PRO BOWL WEEKEND

         "Looking to pump life into what's perennially the most
    desultory of all-star events," the NFL is adding a skills
    competition to its Pro Bowl weekend, with Miller Brewing and
    Reebok on board as sponsors.  The Miller Lite Pro Bowl Battle of
    the Gridiron "will pit AFC stars against NFC players competing
    for cash prizes, in a contest" held the Friday before the Pro
    Bowl game.  ABC, in Year One of a 4-year NFL contract that
    includes the Pro Bowl, will televise the event on February 4.
    Reebok will be the presenting sponsor of the new event.  With the
    addition of a skills event, the NFL joins the NHL, MLB and NBA,
    "all of which have successfully extended their all-star games for
    sponsor add-on programs" (Terry Lefton, BRANDWEEK, 12/12 issue).
    

    Print | Tags: ABC, MLB, NBA, NFL, NHL, Reebok, Walt Disney
  • OPERATOR OF BUD BLIMP IS DEFLATING FINANCIALLY

         "One of the biggest questions in airship advertising these
    days is what does the future hold for the Bud One blimp?,"
    according to Adam Goodman in St. Louis.  Bud One is one of nine
    blimps criss-crossing the U.S.:  Goodyear has three, Met Life has
    two, and Blockbuster, Budweiser, Fuji Film and the U.S. importer
    of Goldschlager cinnamon schnapps each have one.  Airship Int'l
    Ltd., the Orlando company that owns the Bud One blimp and leases
    it to Anheuser-Busch, "is struggling financially."  Last year,
    Met Life ended its contract with Airship Int'l.  Airship Int'l
    Ltd., a publicly held company, lost $9.2M in the first nine
    months of this year, is short on cash and has deferred paying
    dividends on its preferred stock.  But so far, A-B is sticking
    with "ailing" Airship Int'l and according to Tony Ponturo,
    VP/Corporate Media and Sports Marketing, the A-B blimp program is
    "well managed."  A-B has a lot riding on Bud One.  "It can ill
    afford problems with the Super Bowl around the corner on Jan. 29
    -- A-B's largest promotional event of the year."  Airship Int'l
    cut Bud One's monthly leasing fee in half from February to July
    as incentive for A-B to re-sign a multi-year contract that runs
    through '96.  It is believed to be worth around $4M (ST. LOUIS
    POST-DISPATCH, 12/12).
    

    Print | Tags: Anheuser Busch
  • OUTBACK LOOKING TO EXTEND VISA PROMOS TO OLYMPICS

         Outback Steakhouses and Visa "kick off their first joint
    promo today tied to the restaurant's sponsorship" of the Gator
    Bowl.  Outback holiday gift certificates of game tickets
    purchased with a Visa card will "trigger an Outback donation" of
    free tickets for up to 5,000 youths to attend the Gator Bowl.
    Outback VP/Marketing Nancy Schneld hopes to run bigger promos
    with Visa next year tied to the Olympic Games.  Outback will
    raise its marketing budget to $10M in '95 (BRANDWEEK, 12/12
    issue).
    

    Print | Tags: Visa
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