SBD/January 24, 2012/Marketing and Sponsorship

Mom Knows Best: Quaker Oats Says Attracting Soccer Moms Key To Deal With MLS Fire

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Quaker Oats hoping Fire jersey sponsorship will help them reach soccer moms
The MLS Fire last week announced the club had signed Quaker Oats as its new jersey sponsor, and a big push behind the company’s first signature North American sports partnership was an effort to reach soccer moms. Quaker Dir of Communications Candace Mueller-Medina noted moms are the company’s target demographic, and soccer is “becoming one of the fastest growing sports out there, especially among youth.” “We wanted to provide an opportunity to reach moms in a really meaningful way,” Mueller-Medina said. “Keeping the family healthy often falls in mom’s lap, and with the growing popularity of soccer in this country, what better way to reach mom?” Meanwhile, Andell Sports Group Managing Dir Javier Leon, whose company owns the MLS team, said another influence on reaching the agreement was the appointment of Quaker North American President Jose Luis Prado. During Prado’s time as Gamesa-Quaker President in Mexico, the company sponsored top level Mexican Primera División soccer club Pachuca. Leon said the Fire were “not concerned” at all about Quaker being a novice in the North American sports sponsorship landscape. “The nice thing about Jose Luis is he does come with a background of working with another sports company, a big club in Mexico and really growing their community and that presence through that company.” He added, “We’re not concerned, in fact we see this as a huge opportunity.” Mueller-Medina added Prado has a “strong passion” for the sport and was a “key player in making this partnership a reality.”

WORKING ON ACTIVATION: Quaker’s deal with the Fire is reportedly for $7.5M over three years, and while the company is largely still working on how it will activate around the deal, some components are already set. Toyota Park will feature a “Quaker Corner” seating section where Mueller-Medina said the company intends to allow fans in the area to sample new and current products. Quaker also will become the official breakfast foods and nutritious snacks provider, stocking the team’s clubhouse and providing breakfast and snacks to the players on a daily basis. In addition, Quaker will title sponsor the Chicago Fire Juniors, the team’s youth development program.

OPEN TO MORE SPORTS DEALS: Mueller-Medina said the company is “getting our feet wet” with the Fire deal, though Quaker is open to signing more sports sponsorships. She said, “We really find that this is going to be a great starting point for us.” Quaker is the official hot cereal of the NFL, through its association with parent company PepsiCo, and also serves as the official breakfast foods partner of MLS.
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