SBD/October 18, 2011/Marketing and Sponsorship

Spider Man: UFC Fighter Anderson Silva Earning Star Status In His Native Brazil

UFC's Anderson Silva becoming a hot marketing property in his native Brazil
UFC fighter Anderson "Spider" Silva’s celebrity status “is hitting fever pitch in Brazil, making him one of the first MMA fighters outside of America to really make it into the mainstream,” according to Hywel Teague of ESPN.com. Silva looks set to be “the first South American fighter to become a true public sweetheart.” He was recently named “one of the ‘men of the year’ and was featured on the front cover of ‘Alfa,’ a Brazilian GQ-style publication.” And two weeks ago Silva “shared a stage with the unlikely dancing partner” of Justin Bieber. Add to his resume “an interview on Programa do Jo (a David Letterman-style prime-time talk show), a series of commercials for Burger King (one of his major sponsors) and an ESPN Brazil magazine front cover, and it’s plain to see that Silva’s star power isn’t just growing -- it’s already stratospheric.” All this makes Silva “the hottest property in Brazilian MMA.” Wherever you go in Brazil, “it’s hard to escape The Spider.” UFC posters “in the entrance of stores across Rio bear his visage, newsstands are full of Silva magazine covers, and the 2011 documentary ‘Like Water’ is in the process of securing a national distribution deal.” Should this trend continue, “Silva has the potential to join Brazilian sporting idols such as Pele and Ayrton Senna” (ESPN.com, 10/17).
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