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Kerri Strug has signed as spokesperson for the ACE Brand of Elastic Health Supports, bandages and braces. She will be featured in ACE Brand advertising and promotional programs, and will represent the company at events across the U.S. (ACE)....Champion Products and Creadis/HA-LO inked a joint deal which gives HA-LO exclusive rights to sell branded Champion apparel to the corporate promotional market in Canada (Champion)....Steiner Sports Memorabilia has signed a deal with the NHL for all autographed and unautographed collectibles (Steiner Sports)....PepsiCo announced that it has signed a deal with the England and Wales Cricket Board to become a global partner of the ICC Cricket World Cup. Pepsi will become a main sponsor of the event, held in England in May and June '99, and receive use of the Cricket World Cup name and registered trademark in brand advertising and promotions, field board signage and presence and pouring rights at all stadiums (Pepsi). GENERAL: AD AGE's Bradley Johnson reports that Sara Lee "complains" that Ball Park Draft, a micro brew sold at Jacobs Field, "steps on its trademark for Ball Park Franks" (AD AGE, 9/29 issue)....Wilson Sporting Goods Co. announced that a NJ Federal Judge has ruled in a patent infringement case that 21 of Prince's performance tennis racquets infringed Wilson's Hammer patents (Wilson).
The Indians drank a product made by PepsiCo's AllSport this season and displayed their jugs in the dugouts at Jacobs Field, according to Sheldon Ocker of the AKRON BEACON JOURNAL. But since Gatorade is an official MLB postseason sponsor, its logo will be seen in "every dugout" during postseason play. Ocker adds that Gatorade will also provide each team with cups and towels (AKRON BEACON JOURNAL, 9/30). CHAN HO! The marketing of Dodgers P Chan Ho Park was examined by Jay Greene of the ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER. Park "solidified his status as South Korea's greatest endorser last month" when he signed the country's "most lucrative marketing deal ever" with Tri Gem Computer Inc.'s Sambo computers for $895,000. Park will earn $2.9M in endorsements this year -- "more than 10 times his salary." Greene adds that Park "is so big in South Korea" that Nike will use him to market its new Air Franchise shoe, which Park debuted on the mound Sunday, and which are marketed by other athletes in the U.S. (ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER, 9/28). MLB NOTES: Yankees CF Bernie Williams will be the spokesperson for MLB International's Pitch, Hit and Run Program when it begins in Puerto Rico on November 1 (MLBI). ...MLBP and the MLBPA have teamed up with GA-based The Bibb Co. for a lineup of bedding coordinates featuring 30 MLB All-Stars. Bibb will also introduce "Grand Slam," a new 120-count montage of all MLB logos in addition to their line of individual team sheets and comforters (MLB).
The NHL is preparing an ad campaign that promotes its tie to the '98 Winter Olympics, while league sponsors "gear up to spend" $200M in NHL-themed marketing and media programs, according to Jeff Jensen of AD AGE. NHLE VP/ Corporate Marketing Ed Horne said that overall sponsorship support is up 30% over last season. NHL sponsors Anheuser- Busch; IBM; Nike; Norelco; Quaker State; Wendy's and Coca- Cola's Coke, PowerAde and Surge brands will begin "touting the new season" in a USA TODAY special section October 3. Jensen notes a TV campaign "is also expected to air by mid- October," with a second-wave breaking "closer" to the NHL's All-Star Game in January. The league has signed Russell Athletic and Sears, Roebuck & Co. to distribute 18 million All-Star Game ballots. For the NHL's opening weekend in Japan, Coca-Cola, IBM and Nike are sponsors and ESPN and ESPN2 will broadcast the games (AD AGE, 9/29 issue). COOL STUFF: Jensen adds that the NHL will launch "NHL Cool Shots," a weekly, half-hour sports lifestyle show, "akin to NBC's 'NBA Inside Stuff,' aimed at the 12-24 demographic" (AD AGE, 9/29). "NHL Cool Shots" debuts today on Fox Sports Net and RSNs in the U.S. and will be seen on TSN in Canada during the first week of the season. The NHL Productions show will be presented by PowerAde (NHL).