SBD/Issue 245/Sponsorships, Advertising & Marketing

Deutsche Bank Extends PGA Tour Event Sponsorship Two More Years

Deutsche Bank Has Title Sponsored The
Boston-Area Tournament Since Its Inception In '03

The PGA Tour and Deutsche Bank Thursday announced that the bank has exercised a two-year option to continue its sponsorship of the Deutsche Bank Championship through '12. Also, EMC Corp. has increased its involvement with the tournament to become a local presenting sponsor for the next two years. EMC has been a Founders Club Partner since the event's inception in '03 (PGA Tour/Deutsche Bank). The announcement contradicts a report earlier this week claiming EMC "was set to take over title sponsorship of the event." Deutsche Bank has title sponsored the tourney since it began (BOSTON.com, 9/2). Deutsche Bank Americas CEO Seth Waugh Thursday said that he "considers the tournament 'a home run' since it made its PGA Tour debut in 2003, and says he's committed to keeping the tournament in Boston long-term" (ESPNBOSTON.com, 9/2). Similarly, EMC spokesperson Patrick Cooley said that the Massachusetts-based company "sees the sponsorship as a way to help an event that drives capital to local businesses over Labor Day weekend, and also contributes to local charities." Cooley noted that "in exchange for the increase in funding, EMC gets increased hosting and hospitality benefits" (BOSTON HERALD, 9/3).

TEEING OFF: Waugh christened Deutsch Bank's two-year contract renewal with the PGA Tour by playing 18 holes with Tiger Woods Thursday in the Deutsch Bank Championship pro-am in Boston. Waugh spoke with SportsBusiness Journal writer Michael Smith about the renewal.

Q: What was at the root of the decision to renew?

Waugh: Great experiences, years of great returns. The whole reason we did this was to be with clients in unique ways and to brand ourselves at a time when we thought it was especially important. It's still important as we go through this crisis to be in front of clients. Why walk away from such a great experience?

Q: Another local company, EMC, has joined as a presenting sponsor. Was Deutsche Bank involved with bringing it on?

Waugh: That was me. We've had a very good relationship, we're a client of theirs and they're a client of ours. I made one call and that was pretty much it. I thought they could help us raise the bar. They had been a founding partner and now they're the presenting sponsor. At end of day, we want to make sure there's golf in New England for a long time and they can be a great partner.

Q: Did you get a commission?

Waugh: No (laughs), but we've had a great relationship with the Tour and we all agreed that bringing them in at an elevated level was a great idea.

Q: How much of the sponsorship is pure branding, how much is location as a Boston-based bank and how much of it is the hospitality?

Waugh: Initially it was branding. This was at a time (2003) that we were launching the brand in the U.S. People didn't know us and our goal was to have the U.S. become 40 to 45 percent of our business. The client piece is really important. We had 16 foursomes in the pro-am, three clients with one person from Deutsche Bank. It's a way to spend the day with people in a different environment. The relationships pay for this thing overnight.

Q: Ever catch much grief about sponsoring golf and has the climate changed?

Waugh: When there's a need for economic activity, you shouldn't be stopping.
I know some people look at golf as a boondoggle of whatever, but at the end of day, it's a serious branding exercise, a serious client exercise, a serious charitable exercise. I was told by my mentor that the best thing you can do for world is create a job. When you look at the economic impact of this tournament, we've created a few jobs. We're not cutting back.

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