SBD/Dec. 20, 2010/Marketing and Sponsorship

Johnnie Walker Signs Marathon Runner Gebrselassie To Deal

Gebrelassie Appears In New Ad For Johnnie Walker

Marathon world record holder and two-time Olympic Gold Medal winner Haile Gebrselassie has signed a one-year advertising contract with Johnnie Walker whiskey valued at $100,000. Gebrselassie is joining the brand’s “Walk with Giants” campaign, which celebrates the stories of achievement for famed men and women such as golfer Greg Norman and actor Richard Carlyle. Gebrselassie, a native of Ethiopia, is the only African athlete in the campaign. Gebrselassie’s 70-second spot, which shows the runner jogging through Ethiopia -- but does not show him drinking whiskey -- will air in Latin America, Africa and Europe. Gebrselassie announced his retirement from professional running after dropping out of the '10 ING N.Y. Marathon, but then reversed his decision days later, saying he is targeting the '12 London Games.

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