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SBD Global/December 14, 2012/Marketing and Sponsorship

Nike To Become United Soccer League's Primary Sponsor

Nike said that it is "taking over as sponsor" of the United Soccer League three years after the company sold its majority stake in the minor league circuit, according to Erik Siemers of the PORTLAND BUSINESS JOURNAL. Nike inherited ownership of the USL in '07 when it acquired U.K.-based football brand Umbro, which held a 98% stake in the league. The company subsequently sold Umbro to Iconix Brand Group in a $225M agreement that closed earlier this month, prompting Nike to "shift over and become USL's primary sponsor." The USL is "comprised of seven different leagues including the 11-team USL Pro circuit, a women's league, an indoor league, and several youth development leagues" (PORTLAND BUSINESS JOURNAL, 12/12).
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