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SBD/October 1, 2013/Marketing and Sponsorship
D-Wade's Endorsement Portfolio Growing As He Begins New Deals With Tie, Sock Companies
Published October 1, 2013
LEBRON UNVEILS WATCH: WOMEN'S WEAR DAILY's Rebecca Kleinman reported Heat F LeBron James' limited-edition watch for Audemars Piguet, for which he has served as a brand ambassador since '11, launched last Friday "with an event in Miami for 350 guests." The watch "features an 18-karat pink gold case and oversize Arabic numerals offset by a gray patterned dial and interchangeable crocodile and rubber straps." There "really isn’t a target customer for the 600 watches." Audemars Piguet CEO Francois-Henry Bennahmias said that they "will sell for an average of $51,500 each" (WWD.com, 9/26). James appeared on CNBC's "Squawk on the Street" yesterday to promote the new watch. He said, "I've always liked watches growing up and when the opportunity presented itself it was easy for me to say yes." James said when he endorses a product, "I like to have a lot of personal" input. James said the "relationship started about ten years ago" with Audemars Piguet with a "mentor of mine, Jay Z," who also had his own watches with the brand. CNBC's Kelly Evans said, "There are a lot of people who are going to say, 'Are you getting out of touch with the fans?' I mean, how many people can afford a $51,000 watch?" James: "It starts for me on the court … and everything else will take care of itself." He noted some of the funds from the sale of these watches will go to the LeBron James Family Foundation ("Squawk on the Street," CNBC, 9/30).