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SBD/Issue 132/Sponsorships, Advertising & MarketingPrint All
Branson And Virgin Group Reach Multi-Million
Dollar Deal To Sponsor F1 Team Brawn GP
START YOUR ENGINES: In London, Russell Hotten writes the Virgin-Brawn deal "shows that other sponsors are willing to step in, but the prices being paid for sponsorship are thought to be" down as much as 60% from last season. Meanwhile, the F1 season kicks off Sunday in "typically supercharged fashion, but even this pinnacle of motor racing ... faces a financial crisis." There will be "less glitz and glamour this season," and for the "first time in years, the talk is of contraction, not expansion" (LONDON TIMES, 3/27).
Golfsmith's Refund Promotion Aims
To Boost Golf-Equipment Sales
WIN-WIN SITUATION: FANHOUSE.com's Shane Bacon wrote the promo "really is a brilliant scheme in my opinion, because it's a win-win scenario." If Garcia does not win The Masters, the companies "probably convinced people in need of a new driver to go with TaylorMade." And if Garcia does win, TaylorMade "gets to boast how their marquee tour player just took down The Masters with all TaylorMade equipment" (FANHOUSE.com, 3/23).
AirTran Airways has signed Brewers LF Ryan Braun as its "pitchman in Milwaukee," according to Don Walker of the MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL. Braun will appear in AirTran ads and "make personal appearances on behalf of the airline." He also "will begin appearing on several billboards in the Milwaukee area." While Midwest Airlines remains the team's official airline, AirTran "has become increasingly involved with the Brewers." When Mercedes-Benz pulled out of its naming rights deal for Miller Park's right-field picnic area, AirTran "stepped in and purchased the naming rights." AirTran also has deals with Packers WR Donald Driver, IRL driver Danica Patrick and Falcons QB Matt Ryan, as well as several other athletes (MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL, 3/27).
Braun Will Appear In AirTran Ads, Make Appearances On Behalf Of Airline
Sprint Dir Says Company "Committed
More Than Ever" To NASCAR
FULL FORCE AHEAD: In Atlanta, Peralte Paul reported Aflac is "going full throttle" with its NASCAR sponsorships after signing a deal last May to serve as the season-long primary sponsor of Roush Fenway Racing's No. 99 Sprint Cup car driven by Carl Edwards. Aflac Manager of Corporate Sponsorships Keith Farley said, "Any sponsorship we do, we have to look at the investment we're making and what it yields. We've seen the power of NASCAR and the relationships we can build." While Aflac sponsors other sporting-related events, the NASCAR "focus is the company's largest." Farley: "The investment that we've made -- we've seen a positive return. That's why we're increased the investment because the return has exponentially increased" (ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 3/26).
DAYS OF THUNDER: Kenny Bernstein Racing Manager Kenny Bernstein said the NHRA "hired IMG last year to help find sponsors" for the teams and they are "all pounding the pavement as hard as they can." Bernstein: "That's all any of us can do. It's hard to get sponsors in the best of times, let alone when everyone's so scared of what's going to happen next" (AUTOWEEK, 3/23 issue).
EVERYTHING LOWER IN TEXAS: Texas Motor Speedway (TMS) and SMI Properties are cutting prices by 18-55% on more than 40 merchandise items during the events surrounding the April 5 Sprint Cup Samsung 500 (TMS). Meanwhile, in Dallas, Anthony Andro noted fans buying $25 in tickets for the Samsung 500 from the TMS ticket office or merchandise at TMS' gift shop on April 3 "will receive a TMS race program cover poster designed and signed by artist Sam Bass" (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 3/26).