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SBD/Issue 43/Sponsorships, Advertising & Marketing
Published November 11, 2009
Under Armour Founder & CEO Kevin Plank appeared on CNBC’s “Power Lunch” yesterday, where the net's Jane Wells noted the company is "reassessing" its shoe strategy. Plank said, "We are continuing to look at what we see as Under Armour being a growth company." He noted the company has "five levers of growth that we've been talking about" -- men's apparel, women's apparel, footwear, international and direct consumer. Plank: "What you see from us is that we've got the ability to pull on these levers and be patient and prudent with how aggressive we want to grow. Footwear for us continues to be an enormous opportunity." Under Armour released its first line of athletic cleats in '06, and Plank said, "From football cleats to baseball cleats to training shoes and then into running shoes this year, each one of those has been a learning experience. So what we're saying in 2009 is that we're looking to become excellent in the categories we're in" ("Power Lunch," CNBC, 11/10).
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BUCKING TRADITION: In Columbus, Rob Oller reports Ohio State Univ. (OSU) football fans are "upset about the tribute uniforms the Buckeyes plan to wear" for the school's November 21 game against Michigan. The uniforms will be unveiled Sunday on OhioStateBuckeyes.com and reportedly include a "white helmet with a red stripe and numbers on the side; a white and gray jersey with web-like stitching on the shoulders; and gray pants with a red block 'O' on the hip." Oller writes, "Generally, those who consider the alternate uniform a fashion faux pas break into three camps, with some crossover: those who see no reason to mess with tradition; those who think the tail (Nike) is wagging the dog (OSU); and those bothered by the historical inaccuracy of the uniforms" (COLUMBUS DISPATCH, 11/11).
WITH OR WITHOUT CREAM? Starbucks will introduce its VIA Ready Brew instant coffee to NASCAR fans during this weekend’s races at Phoenix through an extensive trackside sampling program. A fleet of Starbucks golf carts will blanket Phoenix Int’l Raceway Friday through Sunday as brand ambassadors pass out samples of the instant coffee. As part of the weekend activation, Starbucks and VIA Ready Brew logos will appear as associate sponsors on Earnhardt Ganassi Racing’s (EGR) No. 1 Chevrolet driven by Martin Truex Jr. Starbucks VIA Ready Brew is available in both Starbucks retail outlets and Target stores. Target sponsors EGR (Michael Smith, SportsBusiness Journal). Meanwhile, ESPN.com's David Newton reported EGR "will remain with Chevrolet" after reportedly meeting last week with reps from both Chevy and Toyota (ESPN.com, 11/10).