SBD/Issue 1/Sponsorships, Advertising & Marketing

Fila Says “Ciao” To U.S. Open; Will Lacoste Say “Bonjour?”

Fila Ends 22-Year Run
As U.S. Open Sponsor

Fila is out after 22 years as a U.S. Open Tennis Championships sponsor after “balking at higher fees and a package deal that would have included backing the U.S. Open Series,” according to Daniel Kaplan of SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL. A USTA source said of Fila, “They don’t have a definitive strategy, and we are looking elsewhere.” The sources indicated that Lacoste is “one of the top contenders for the sponsorship.” The USTA is looking for a five-year deal worth $3.5-4M annually with a company that “will more aggressively promote its ties to the tournament” and create a “year-round licensing and merchandising program.” The USTA source pointed out that while sales of Nike, USTA and Wilson merchandise “were up through the first eight days of the tournament, Fila’s were down.” Through the same period, Lacoste “had sold $500,000 of goods, a level the USTA did not expect the company to reach at that stage of the tournament until its second or third year on site” (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 9/13 issue).

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Related Topics:

Nike, USTA

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