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SBD Global/June 24, 2014/Marketing and SponsorshipPrint All
The Premier League "will stage an auction for sponsors for the first time in 12 years, further cutting Barclays’ chances of keeping its name associated with the most popular football league in the world," according to John Reynolds of the London DAILY MAIL. Barclays’ £40M ($68M) annual sponsorship "is one of the highest-profile deals in sport because of the global reach of the Premier League." Previous contracts between the bank and Premier League "have included an exclusivity period, which has given Barclays up to six months to renew the deal without rival bids." But Premier League clubs "have voted not to offer the same exclusivity period this time, meaning the deal will go out for bids." Barclays Head of Brand David Wheldon said, "It is one of the most valuable title sponsorships in the world and, for commercial reasons, this cycle the Premier League will be going to the open market. We have not decided whether to bid" (DAILY MAIL, 6/21).
Wimbledon is "an annual miracle of commercial enterprise" during which the All England Lawn Tennis Club "tears up large sections of the corporate rule book as it puts propriety ahead of profit, clinging as closely as possible to the idea of 'tennis in an English garden,'" according to Richard Evans of NEWSWEEK. It "does not allow sponsorship signage anywhere across the club’s 14 acres." Companies must follow strict “almost entirely white” guidelines for clothing -- a rule that has been toughened up this year to include headbands and wristlets. There are no corporate boxes, no music played at changeovers, no replays shown on the big TV screen, “because it might embarrass or distract the players.” Club Chair Philip Brook said, "We run a tennis tournament, not an event. And we are successful precisely because we don’t have signage on the Centre Court. It enhances the uniqueness of the tournament and attracts the kind of partners like Rolex who share our vision and are content to have just one small sign on their Centre Court clock." That "should be laughable in today’s sporting world of giant billboards and raucous TV advertising." Earlier this month, Wimbledon became $174M richer when the '16–20 issue of debentures sold out at $85,000 each, "having been oversubscribed by 100 percent." This "was the first five-year cycle of debenture sales" since '09, and the price has rocketed from $47,000. Brook: “An 80 percent increase is big but we gauged the pricing on the demand we were seeing from internal sales." The club owns two companies -- "the Championships and the Ground Company." It is the latter organization that receives the debenture money as well as a “significant sum” in rent from the Championships for the two weeks of the tournament. In this way "all the modernization of the site from the building of a new No. 1 Court; a vast Broadcast Centre; the new Members and Players building and the roof over Centre Court has been financed" (NEWSWEEK, 6/23).
Newly promoted Bundesliga club FC Cologne "has extended its partnership with Ford until at least '15." Ford Germany President Bernhard Mattes said, "We are looking forward to the Bundesliga and want and certainly will have a future together with the club." Mattes added that "nothing is official yet." However, the contract "has been drawn up and is ready to be signed by Ford" (EXPRESS, 6/20). ... Asian online gaming brand Fun88 announced the renewal of its partnership with EPL side Burnley. The Clarets have reached the end of their two-year shirt sponsorship deal with online kitchen specialists Premier Range, which will be replaced by Fun88 for the '14-15 season (Burnley). ... Spanish tennis player Garbine Muguruza "has just bagged her first major endorsement deal" after signing with Japanese automobile manufacturer Mazda as its new brand ambassador (TENNIS WORLD USA, 6/22). ... League One side Barnsley announced an extension to its commercial partnership with industrial recycling company CK Beckett. The Barnsley-based company has signed a home and away shirt deal which gets underway at the start of next season and runs until the end of the '16-17 season. In addition, CK Beckett will renew its sponsorship of the South Stand and will become the new sponsors of the Family Area in the East Stand (Barnsley FC). ... Coca-Cola Canada has agreed to a three-year deal with world No. 12 tennis player Genie Bouchard, of Montreal (Coca-Cola). ... League Two Exeter City named WTS.co.uk -- the former sponsors of League Two side Torquay United -- "as its newest major club partner, with WTS becoming both the main stand sponsor at St James Park (formerly the Flybe Stand, and now the WTS Stand), as well as the new sponsors of the shorts the team will play all League and Cup fixtures in this season" (EXETER EXPRESS & ECHO, 6/23). ... League One side Sheffield United has agreed to a two-year back-of-shirt sponsorship deal with DBL Logistics. The club also agreed to a four-year kit deal with adidas (Sheffield United).