SBD/April 6, 2011/Marketing and Sponsorship

Coca-Cola Officially Ends Deal With Wayne Rooney, Will Focus On London Games

Rooney reportedly received $975,000 annually for endorsing Coca-Cola
Manchester United F Wayne Rooney “has been dropped by Coca-Cola” after the company had “quietly removed him from its endorsement roster last year,” according to Matt Scott of the GUARDIAN. Coca-Cola's U.S. management “was so dismayed by reports of an alleged infidelity with a prostitute while his wife was pregnant that he was dropped from a Coke Zero marketing campaign last year.” But at the time, the company's London office said the relationship with Rooney was "ongoing." Coca-Cola in a statement said, "Our contract with Wayne Rooney came to an end last year and we mutually agreed that we would not renew our relationship." Scott notes Rooney currently “faces a two-match ban for a foul-mouthed rant at a TV camera, but as far as Manchester United's title sponsor is concerned, everything is rosy.” An Aon spokesperson said, "The reason Aon engaged in the sponsorship is that Manchester United transcends any one player. … We leave player related issues to the club" (GUARDIAN, 4/6). Coca-Cola in a statement said: “Our marketing plans have evolved to focus on our sponsorship of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and the upcoming launch of our plans for the Olympic Torch Relay” (AP, 4/6). Rooney reportedly earned US$975,000 a year from his deal with Coca-Cola (MARKETINGWEEK.co.uk, 4/6).
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