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SBD/June 15, 2011/Marketing and Sponsorship
Published June 15, 2011
LISTEN TO THIS: Newly retired NBAer Shaquille O'Neal has agreed to endorse battery and headphone company iGo and "will appear in the company's marketing and advertising campaigns." That includes "print and television advertising, packaging and in-store and online promotions." O'Neal's "first duty will be to help launch" the new iGo Green Rechargeable Alkaline battery brand and iGo headphones that will be available nationwide this summer. This is the "first time iGo has employed a celebrity of any sort for its product marketing" (MEDIAPOST.com, 6/14).
LICENSE TO ILL: NASCAR Team Properties last night was recognized as the "Best Sports Program of the Year" at the International Licensing Expo in Las Vegas. The award follows a year in which NASCAR and its teams formed a new licensing trust, ending a system that required licensees to negotiate deals with each individual NASCAR team and replacing it with one in which licensees could secure rights across the sport from one entity. Since then, the group has signed deals with Lionel Electric Trains, Motorsports Authentics, Spin Master Toys and Walmart (Tripp Mickle, SportsBusiness Journal).
ON THE LINKS: Lexus yesterday announced the addition of golfer Jason Day to its sponsorship roster, with the deal beginning tomorrow at the start of the U.S. Open. Day will wear the Lexus logo on his apparel and make appearances at Lexus events as a brand ambassador. Lexus' golf endorsers include Nick Watney, Natalie Gulbis, Charles Howell III, Annika Sorenstam, Peter Jacobsen, Mark O'Meara, Raymond Floyd and Johnny Miller (Lexus). Meanwhile, Washington state-based employee benefits, annuities and life insurance provider Symetra Financial yesterday announced an agreement to sponsor golfer J.J. Henry through '12. The agreement with Henry marks Symetra’s first sponsorship with a PGA Tour player (Symetra).
OPEN HAPPINESS: The PGA Tour yesterday announced a new logo and name for the final tournament of the Playoffs for the FedExCup. The event will now be called the Tour Championship by Coca-Cola. The new branding is part of Coca-Cola and Southern Co.'s six-year sponsorship renewals through '16 (PGA Tour). In Atlanta, Jeremiah McWilliams noted the logo “features Coca-Cola’s contour bottle alongside a golf ball.” Tour Championship Exec Dir Todd Rhinehart: “We believe this new logo symbolizes the Coca-Cola Company’s commitment to increasing the reach and impact of the culmination of the FedExCup” (AJC.com, 6/14).