SBD/27/Sponsorships Advertising Marketing

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              Castrol North America announced that Spurs C David
         Robinson will be featured in its "Drive Hard to the NBA
         Finals" sweepstakes, which offers Grand Prize winners an
         all-expense paid trip for two to one game in the '98 or '99
         NBA Finals.  This will mark the first time that Castrol, an
         NBA sponsor since '93, will feature an NBA player in one of
         its promotions and Robinson will be featured on point-of-
         sale materials during the promos run (Castrol).  
              ET TU, SHAQ FU? Shaquille O'Neal appears in a PSA this
         weekend during Sunday's Lakers-Knicks telecast on NBC.  The
         PSA, produced by NBA Entertainment, highlights the Reading
         Is Fundamental campaign.  The spot shows O'Neal reading a
         mystery novel, only to find that his dog, "Brick," has torn
         out the last page (Neal Travis, N.Y. POST, 2/27).

    Print | Tags: Cablevision, Los Angeles Lakers, NBA, NBC, New York Knicks, San Antonio Spurs

              ESPN announced that Classic Sports Network's ad sales
         unit will be combined with ESPN's advertising sales
         department.  Classic Sports was acquired by ESPN in October. 
         ESPN's Advertising Sales Department now markets ESPN brands
         including ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNEWS, ESPN SportsZone, ESPN Int'l
         and Classic Sports Network (ESPN).  

    Print | Tags: ESPN, Walt Disney

              Leo Burnett Co. "dropped out of a competition" to
         handle the account for the PGA Tour's World Golf
         Championships, according to George Lazarus of the CHICAGO
         TRIBUNE.  Burnett cites a "conflict with another" PGA Tour
         group as its reason (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 2/27).
              MARKET-PING: In Toronto, Lorne Rubenstein examines the
         marketing efforts of AZ-based Karsten Manufacturing, which
         manufactures Ping equipment.  Karsten has hired the VA-based
         Martin agency for advertising and promotion, and recently
         signed Bernhard Langer and Lee Westwood.  Rubenstein: "And
         don't be surprised if the company soon announces an
         endorsement deal with Casey Martin."  Karsten President &
         CEO John Solheim: "We didn't advertise at all in the 1980s
         but are doing that now.  We are not where we want to be, but
         we intend to grow and to keep growing" (GLOBE & MAIL, 2/27).

    Print | Tags: PGA Tour

              Serena Williams, who recently signed with Puma, said
         she will have "input" into what she will wear.  Williams: "I
         told them I like the full dresses a little more than the
         skirts, so, it is just -- right now we are working on a lot
         of different designs so we are trying to get something
         together."  Williams said the Puma deal will involve "sports
         and entertainment and we just want to bring something
         different to the game of tennis" (THE DAILY).
              OTHER NOTES: In Miami, Elaine Walker profiled New
         Balance and wrote, "While other athletic shoe manufacturers
         are struggling with stagnating sales, New Balance is riding
         a wave of popularity that has sent sales climbing at a
         double-digit pace" (MIAMI HERALD, 2/26)....Nike "is working"
         to move the March 25 launch of the new Air Jordans from a
         school day to a weekend after complaints from "educators
         nationwide."  The likely new launch date is Saturday, March
         28 (CINCINNATI ENQUIRER, 2/26)....ROLLING STONE's Eric
         Boehlert examines the corporate use of contemporary music in
         TV advertising, noting Nike's use of the Verve's "Bitter
         Sweet Symphony."  Boehlert: "Why the mad rush from Madison
         Avenue?  Clients, eager for any sort of marketing edge, want
         the authenticity and star association that hit songs
         deliver."  Levi's Senior Ad Manager Joe Townsend: "If we can
         show kids we're cool, we have a step up."  Boehlert writes
         that the "going rate" for licensing of a "top pop song" is
         $200,000 to $400,000 (ROLLING STONE, 3/19 issue). 

    Print | Tags: Nike, Puma
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