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SBD Global/June 27, 2014/Marketing and Sponsorship

Adidas Drops Luis Suárez World Cup Commercials, Will Hold Talks After Event

Adidas said it will re-evaluate its deal with Luis Suárez after World Cup.
Adidas has dropped Uruguay striker Luis Suárez "from all commercial activities for the rest of the World Cup in Brazil and set for talks at the highest level with the player and his representatives at the end of the tournament," according to Adam Crafton of the London DAILY MAIL. A company statement read, "Adidas fully supports FIFA’s decision. Adidas certainly does not condone Luis Suarez’s recent behaviour and we will again be reminding him of the high standards we expect from our players. We have no plan to use Suarez for any additional marketing activities during the 2014 FIFA World Cup. We will discuss all aspects of our future partnership directly with Suarez and his team following the World Cup" (DAILY MAIL, 6/26).

NO LONG TERM HIT EXPECTED: FORBES' Christina Settimi asked, "does the bite heard around the world hurt Suarez?" Financially, "it appears not." Suárez’s "largest and most important sponsor is keen on keeping their star whom they signed to a long-term multi-million incentivized contract." Adidas' statement "is a transgression from the company’s previous policy on violence." The shoemaker "dropped singer Teyana Taylor after she had a spat with fellow pop star Rihanna and threatened her over social media." Then a representative for the company said that "it doesn’t condone violence of any kind." But that is "how important" football is to adidas’ business (FORBES, 6/26). In London, Simon Peach reported Suárez "also has a relationship with 888poker, having recently joined them as a worldwide ambassador." The forward "has produced several video diaries during the World Cup as part of that role, which will also see him join in with several of the company's events." However, 888poker announced on Wednesday that "it is considering dropping Suarez after this latest incident" (INDEPENDENT, 6/26).
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