SBD/October 16, 2013/Marketing and Sponsorship

Chips & Putts: McIlroy's Sponsorship Deals Detailed In Court Proceedings

McIlroy reportedly had contract earnings of $50M in '13
In Ireland, Colm Keena reported proceedings in Dublin's Commercial Court on Monday revealed that golfer Rory McIlroy "negotiated sponsorship contracts over the past two years" with a value of up to $129M. Horizon Sports Management, with which McIlroy signed agreements in '11 and '13, said that "as a result of its work," he had contract earnings of $50M in '13. Horizon said that a multiyear sponsorship deal with Nike, negotiated in late '12, was worth $20M a year to him and "other lucrative sponsorship deals were also negotiated" (IRISH TIMES, 10/15). REUTERS' Peter Rutherford writes with a high-profile relationship with tennis player Caroline Wozniacki "hogging the headlines and a bitter court case lurking in the background, McIlroy has no shortage of distractions to overcome before he can recapture the form that shot him to the top of the order of merit on both sides of the Atlantic last year" (REUTERS, 10/16).

TOUGH TIMES: GOLFCHANNEL.com's Jason Sobel reported Tiger Woods yesterday in a conference call to promote his World Challenge event "allowed that getting corporate partnerships is more difficult than it used to be." Woods said, "It's been one of those times, unfortunately, for a lot of charities where it's a tough economic climate right now for anyone to try and raise money. Luckily our (Tiger Woods) Foundation really got going with this event, some of our other events that we run. We were in that boom. I think we've got a lot of awareness and equity built in through all those years. I think that's why we're still able to raise the money that we're able to raise, just because people are aware of it and they understand what we're trying to do and the message is already out there" (GOLFCHANNEL.com, 10/15).

STAYING PUT: Cleveland Golf/Srixon last Thursday announced a multiyear contract extension with golfer Michael Putnam to remain a member of their PGA Tour staff. Putnam finished the regular season as the earnings leader on the Web.com Tour. He will continue to play with Cleveland and Srixon equipment, will wear a Cleveland hat, Srixon glove and will carry a Cleveland bag (Cleveland Golf/Srixon).

AIR SUPPORT: In Wichita, Scott Paske reports the Web.com Tour Air Capital Classic after a three-year contract extension "will be played for the 25th time in June and at least two additional years with the financial backing of a new presenting sponsor and 22 community business leaders who have joined the event’s recently formed Ambassadors program." Aetna will sponsor the event through '16, and the '14 tournament will be called the Air Capital Classic presented by Aetna. No financial details were disclosed, but Aetna’s support "will be significant for an event that had been facing an uncertain future for most of the year" (WICHITA EAGLE, 10/16).
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