SBD/January 28, 2011/Marketing and Sponsorship

Plop Plop, Fizz Fizz: U.S. Figure Skating Signs Alka-Seltzer Plus To Deal

The U.S. Figure Skating Association has signed Bayer's Alka-Seltzer Plus as an official sponsor in the cold and flu category. The brand will be featured in multiple advertising units during this weekend's U.S. Figure Skating Championships, which are being held in Greensboro, N.C. The brand also receives official category designation, on-site signage and rights to use the USFSA logo. In addition to Alka-Seltzer, USFSA signed Lumber Liquidators subsidiary Cabinets To Go as a television and on-site advertiser for the event. The event also will feature USFSA's roster of incumbent sponsors, which includes event title partner AT&T, State Farm and Smuckers. USFSA last year acquired the rights to the Int'l Skating Union's Grand Prix events. It sublicensed the rights from Universal Sports this year and ratings are up 30% compared to last year and averaging a 0.9, according to Van Wagner Sports President Cliff Kaplan, who assists USFSA with sponsorship and advertising sales. Kaplan: "What I was most heartened about was that the ratings growth was done in a post-Olympics year and we had very good sales efforts against that." NBC will air seven hours of skating from this weekend's event.

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