SBD/Issue 98/Sponsorships, Advertising & Marketing

NASCAR Sponsors Sprint, Home Depot, BofA Standing Behind Deals

NASCAR Sponsors Hope Their
Investments Generate More Business
NASCAR sponsors that remain in the sport despite “bad financial news are banking on their NASCAR investment to generate more business,” according to a front-page piece by George & Poole of the CHARLOTTE OBSERVER. Despite last month announcing that it will lay off 8,000 employees, Sprint PR Manager Kimberly Meesters said that the company’s level of involvement in NASCAR "won’t change ... and Sprint actually plans to spend slightly more" on the sport this year. Sprint, the title sponsor of NASCAR’s top series, sponsors all 22 tracks that host Cup races and has a 10,000-square-foot marketing display at each race.  Meesters: “Advertising is not optional. When you’re in difficult economic times, it’s more important than ever.” Meesters added in ’08, Sprint’s first year as title sponsor of the Cup series, the company’s “measurements were all up.” Meesters: “That’s what we look at. Does it drive our business?” Meanwhile, The Home Depot, which also announced it is cutting 7,000 jobs, last year renewed its sponsorship of the Joe Gibbs Racing No. 20 Sprint Cup entry driven by Joey Logano, and a Home Depot spokesperson said that the company “has no plans to renegotiate the multiyear deal.” Also, Bank of America (BofA) Senior VP/National Media Relations Joe Goode said that the bank’s title sponsorship of the October 17 Sprint Cup race at Lowe’s Motor Speedway and its status as official bank of NASCAR “will remain.” However, Goode said that the bank “plans to spend less on hospitality events at races.” Goode noted that BofA’s sales of NASCAR banking products doubled from ’07 to '08. BofA also “formed a motorsports advisory group a few years ago to focus on NASCAR lending opportunities.” Goode: “We don’t want to stop things that help us grow our business” (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 2/7).

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