SBD/May 25, 2011/Marketing and Sponsorship

Marketplace Roundup

In Maine, Larry Mahoney reports New Balance yesterday announced a $5M gift to the Univ. of Maine, the “largest corporate gift ever given to the university.” The gift “will be primarily used to fund the renovations to the field house and Memorial Gym.” Of the $5M, $2M “will be earmarked as a challenge grant for the field house renovation.” In return, New Balance “will get its name on the field house and the Student Recreation and Fitness Center for 20 years.” New Balance Dir of Public Affairs Matt LeBretton said UM AD Steve Abbott called last August and “wanted to know if New Balance would be interested in making a large gift to the university.” Mahoney notes UM teams “won’t be under obligation to wear New Balance shoes or equipment” (BANGOR DAILY NEWS, 5/25).

ROLL WITH IT: CAMPAIGN magazine's Daniel Farey-Jones notes Audi on ITV and Sky Sports Saturday “will premiere a two-and-a-half-minute film during the UEFA Champions League final, highlighting the teamwork and stamina needed to win the Le Mans 24-hour race.” The film, featuring Le Mans driver Allan McNish, “will be shown immediately before the kick-off" during the live coverage of the Barcelona-Manchester United game. Sky 3D “will broadcast a 3D version of the film, which will then be rolled out to cinemas" across the U.K. It is the “first time Audi has run a 3D ad and the first time it has used a spokesperson in its promotional campaigns” (, 5/25).

KICKING IT UP A NOTCH: In Honolulu, Andrew Gomes reported a “gym development firm has clenched a deal to open a BJ Penn-branded UFC Gym in Honolulu, expanding a new chain of fitness clubs integrated with elements of mixed martial arts training.” The gym, which is scheduled to open in January, "will be the fourth UFC Gym and first outside California.” It also will be the “first UFC Gym affiliated with a fighter.” Penn, a Hawaii native, “will have a hand in designing the gym, selecting trainers and picking some favorite foods for the cafe menu” (HONOLULU STAR-ADVERTISER, 5/24).
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