SBD/September 21, 2010/Marketing and Sponsorships

Marketplace Roundup

Yani Tseng Declined $25M Sponsorship That Would Require Her To Become Chinese Citizen

The father of golfer Yani Tseng has indicated that Tseng recently rejected a five-year, US$25M sponsorship deal "offered by a Chinese enterprise, which required her to become a Chinese citizen.” Tseng Mao-hsin said that the business has been “trying to woo” his daughter, a native of Taiwan, since last year and approached her again last month with the contract that includes the "use of private jets and a luxury villa in Beijing.” Tseng Mao-hsin: “We cannot change the nationality. So we rejected it right away" (CHINA POST, 9/19).

EYEING MORE CREATIVE MINDS: AD AGE’s Schultz & Parekh report Anheuser-Busch will be “seeking input” from marketing communications firm and ad agency Anomaly as the brewer “seeks to pump up its iconic Budweiser brand, which has suffered sales declines.” A-B InBev VP/Marketing Keith Levy in a statement said Anomaly will be “one of many agencies submitting work” for the Budweiser brand. However, Levy noted Anomaly will only be working on the Budweiser brand and only in the U.S. Schultz & Parekh note the addition of Anomaly “means new competition for Omnicom Group’s DDB, which has been the lead agency” for the Budweiser brand in the U.S. since the mid-90s and the global agency of record since late ’09. The addition comes nearly two years after InBev’s takeover of A-B (AD AGE, 9/20 issue). 

PR SPIN: The AP's Jim Vertuno notes cyclist Lance Armstrong is "sticking to a relentless public schedule of charity bike rides, speeches, endorsements and meetings with policy groups ... while prosecutors examine his past as part of a federal investigation into drug use in pro cycling." Armstrong is "doing anything but hiding," and PR experts said that that is the "way to stay popular -- or at least, limit the damage to his reputation -- even as prosecutors present evidence to a grand jury." DC-based Levick Strategic Communications Senior VP Gene Grabowski: "It's all the right moves. Other athletes could learn from him" (AP, 9/20).

PROTECTIVE MEASURES: In Chicago, Phil Rogers reports MLB and the MLBPA are studying the BatGlove, a "thin, clear plastic wrap that can be applied to the handle of a ... wood bat for about $5." The product could prevent injuries such as those suffered by Cubs LF Tyler Colvin, who will miss the rest of the season after he was hit in the chest by a broken bat Sunday. BatGlove advocates say that the product "could make baseball a drastically safer game without impacting the performance of the bat." MLB VP/Labor Relations & HR Rob Manfred said that the product is "in the testing stage at MLB's performance lab" (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 9/21).

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