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SBD Global/February 19, 2013/Marketing and Sponsorship

Loss Of Sponsorship Causes NRL Clubs To Consider Legal Action Against ACC

National Rugby League clubs named in the Australian Crime Commission's report are "considering legal action amid revelations the allegations have cost Cronulla" up to A$2M ($2.07M) in sponsorship, according to Brad Walter of the SYDNEY MORNING HERALD. While club bosses were "reluctant to comment on their plans when contacted on Monday" one CEO said that "there had already been preliminary discussions among them about seeking damages over the impact of the report." The exec said that "there were expected to be further discussions at Wednesday's meeting of chief executives in Sydney, and the six clubs -- Canberra, Cronulla, Manly, Newcastle, North Queensland and Penrith" could be among others not mentioned in the report. The Sharks are "reeling from the fallout of the report, which officials say had cost them a potential new deal for the naming rights of their home ground." Cronulla Marketing and Communications GM Patrick Woods said that "the Sharks had been in the final stages of negotiations for the stadium naming rights when the ACC report was released" on Feb. 7. Woods said, "We were very close to signing a million-dollar-plus deal and the ACC report was a major factor in the breakdown of those negotiations" (SMH, 2/19).

NO SHARKS SPONSOR: In Sydney, Read & Honeysett reported that "the Sharks are set to begin the season without a major or sleeve sponsor." Canberra Chair John McIntyre said, "It's obviously the topic of the moment ... There will be discussion about that. I haven't spoken to everybody but I would be very, very surprised if it isn't (discussed)" (THE AUSTRALIAN, 2/19).
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