SBD/Issue 165/Sponsorships, Advertising & Marketing

I Am Ironman: Ford Signs On To Sponsor Triathlon Events

Ford Tough: Ironman
Triathlon Hitches Title Sponsor
Ford has signed a three-year deal to title sponsor the Ironman Triathlon. Beginning this fall, Ford will sponsor the Ironman Triathlon World Championship in Hawaii, as well as five qualifying events. Ford will increase the purse Hawaii race by $100,000 to a total of $580,000 (THE DAILY). USA TODAY’s Michael McCarthy notes Ford is Ironman’s “first title sponsor in a decade.” Ironman’s last title sponsor was Gatorade from ’90-95. Ford will feature its vehicles during NBC’s coverage of Ironman events. World Triathlon owns the Ironman brand and has recently added sponsors such as Dell, Timex, Michelin and Foster Grant for the brand “while expanding its licensed lines of gear, treadmills and weights.” Ford SUV Group Marketing Manager Christine Feuell said of the appeal of Ironman, “Take a look at the sports in the Olympics these days: They are taking on a more extreme appeal” (USA TODAY, 5/19).

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NBC, Olympics, PepsiCo

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