SBD/10/Sponsorships Advertising Marketing

SPONSOR WITHDRAWALS POSTPONE PRO FIGURE SKATING FINALS

     The U.S. Pro Figure Skating Championships in Richmond have
been postponed from their original date in early December, with
organizers citing "11th-hour withdrawals" by sponsors as the
reason.  The RICHMOND TIMES-DISPATCH's John Markon reports Carole
Shulman, Exec Dir of the Professional Skaters Assoc., would not
name names, but said sponsors told them "advertising expenses
were now being deferred to the first or second quarter of 1996."
Shulman said the PSA is targeting February or March for a makeup.
The Open's headliners included former Olympic medalists Katarina
Witt and Victor Petrenko, but Shulman was unsure whether they
would attend a possible makeup date.  NBC was to have shown
highlights from the event on December 30, and Shulman blamed the
TV deal in part for the postponement.  Shulman: "We were
producing the television ourselves and selling it to NBC.
Without the sponsors in line, we couldn't be assured of the
production quality we wanted and NBC wanted. ... NBC's still
working with us" (RICHMOND TIMES-DISPATCH, 11/9).
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