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Volume 24 No. 158

Sponsorships Advertising Marketing

     Marc Roberts, who represents such boxers as Ray Mercer and
Charles Murray, has created a new team sports division by buying
Steve Weinberg's management firm.  Weinberg will head the
division along with Ryan Schinman (N.Y. POST, 2/16)....The PGA
announced a 20% increase in industry attendance at the 43rd PGA
Merchandise show last month in Orlando.  The PGA of America will
stage the '96 PGA International Golf Show this September in Las
Vegas (PGA). ....Attendance was up 36% at the biannual Action
Sports Retailer Trade Expo which concluded February 10 at the
Long Beach Convention Center.  The sold-out show was the largest
ASR Trade Expo in five years with 739 manufacturers present in
1,542 booths (Action Sports)....For Fall '96, ASICS plans to
introduce its GEL-NITRO MT, GEL-AFTERBURNER MT, and CUT SHOT II
MT within its men's and women's indoor volleyball line
(ASICS)....Former Descente executive Jim Johnston has announced
the formation of the Englewood, CO-based Multi-sport Venture
Partners (MVP), a sports business, brand and apparel development
firm (MVP)....The FL-based Discount Auto Parts will sponsor the
inaugural race of the IMSA Slick 50 Pro Series for World Sports
Racer cars.  The race will be March 15 in Sebring, FL (Slick
50)....Coca-Cola's board approved a 14% increase in the company's
quarterly dividend to $.25/share (Chris Roush, ATLANTA
CONSTITUTION, 2/16).

     The following companies are licensed by the NFL to produce
Pro Line merchandise for use by the teams and in the primary
retail categories: Champion, Logo Athletic, Nike, Reebok,
Russell, Starter and Wilson.  Nike and Reebok are the authorized
suppliers of footwear, and no other "brand-identified" shoes may
be worn by any players.  The Cap/Shirt category applies to
headwear and shirts worn by coaches and sideline staff.  Sports
Specialties is the official headwear supplier for all clubs, but
Logo Athletic, Nike, Reebok and Starter are allowed 20 exceptions
for players used in major ad or marketing campaigns (THE DAILY).
AFC            DOLPHINS  PATRIOTS  BILLS     JETS      COLTS
Uniforms       Wilson    Starter   Champion  Champion  Wilson
Cap/Shirt      Starter   Starter   Logo      Starter   Logo
Outerwear      Starter   Starter   Logo      Starter   Logo
               STEELERS  BROWNS    BENGALS   OILERS    JAGUARS
Uniforms       Starter   Russell   Champion  Wilson    Nike
Cap/Shirt      Starter   Starter   Starter   Logo      Nike
Outerwear      Starter   Starter   Starter   Logo      Nike
               CHARGERS  BRONCOS   RAIDERS   SEAHAWKS  CHIEFS
Uniforms       Starter   Nike      Nike      Wilson    Wilson
Cap/Shirt      Starter   Nike      Nike      Reebok    Logo
Outerwear      Starter   Nike      Nike      Reebok    Logo
NFC            COWBOYS   GIANTS    CARDS     EAGLES    REDSKINS
Uniforms       Nike      Reebok    Russell   Russell   Starter
Cap/Shirt      Nike      Reebok    Logo      Starter   Starter
Outerwear      Nike      Reebok    Logo      Starter   Starter
               VIKINGS   PACKERS   LIONS     BEARS     BUCS
Uniforms       Starter   Starter   Reebok    Champion  Wilson
Cap/Shirt      Starter   Logo      Reebok    Starter   Logo
Outerwear      Starter   Logo      Reebok    Starter   Logo
               49ERS     SAINTS    FALCONS   RAMS      PANTHERS
Uniforms       Reebok    Champion  Russell   Russell   Reebok
Cap/Shirt      Reebok    Reebok    Starter   Logo      Reebok
Outerwear      Reebok    Reebok    Starter   Logo      Reebok

     The Tennis Industry Association (TIA) last year launched a
three-year, $15M campaign to promote the game, and Sandra Dolbow
of SPORTING GOODS BUSINESS writes the tennis industry has "picked
itself up" since.  The TIA's effort is getting regular support
from manufacturers, and the USTA recently gave $1.25M.  In
addition, donations have come from such groups as the SGMA,
IHRSA, the Athletic Footwear Association and the Sports Apparel
Products Council.  Wilson Racquet Sports GM Jim Baugh:  "The
industry is rebounding.  Retailers are jumping on tennis.  The
trend started in May and it's continuing."  According to research
by NPD/Smart, racquet sales in specialty shops are up 9% in units
and 11% in dollars through the third quarter of '95.  Sales in
sporting-goods chains were up 13% in both units and dollars.
General sporting-goods chains saw tennis shoe sales up 36% in
dollars and specialty stores saw dollar-sales up 18% (SPORTING
GOODS BUSINESS, 2/96 issue).

     Amer Group Ltd., the Finnish-based parent company of Wilson
Sporting Goods Co., announced yesterday the resignation of Wilson
President and CEO John Riccitiello.  Appointed to his positions
at Wilson in '93, Riccitiello said he resigned to pursue personal
interests.  Wilson Sr. VP/Finance and Administration Jim Reid-
Anderson has been appointed COO until further notice.  His
appointment will be effective March 1, 1996 (Wilson).  George
Lazarus writes in this morning's CHICAGO TRIBUNE that Riccitiello
is leaving to become CEO of Sara Lee Bakery Worldwide.
Riccitiello's departure comes as the Amer Group, has been
"quietly" entertaining offers for the company (CHICAGO TRIBUNE,
2/16).

     The Cartoon Network will debut its sponsorship of Steve
Grissom's NASCAR entry at this Sunday's Daytona 500, according to
the ORLANDO SENTINEL.  Gene Yasuda writes that NASCAR's
popularity is "surging," attracting "hordes of new fans --
including more families, women and white-collar professionals."
That is why the Cartoon Network is taking its place among
"traditional sponsors," such as Budweiser and Valvoline.
Grissom's car will be painted with images of Fred Flintstone and
Barney Rubble, and the network plans to gain recognition by
selling merchandise to NASCAR fans.  Hanna-Barbera Enterprises VP
Tom Barreca:  "We're targeting families, and that's exactly what
NASCAR offers."  A study by the Newport, RI-based Performance
Research indicates more than 70% of NASCAR fans say they "almost
always" or "frequently" buy sponsors' products over a
competitor's. NASCAR says 29% of its fans report household income
of $50,000 or more, nearly 40% are women, and 64% of fans are
married.  Marketing analysts say NASCAR is attracting fans and
sponsors because of expansion.  Once a sport prominent only in
the Southeast, in the past six years NASCAR has introduced races
in Indianapolis, San Francisco and New England.  Last year,
Winston Cup races attracted 5.3 million fans, up 8.8% from 4.9
million in '94.  Marketing experts say NASCAR also benefits from
fans' disenchantment with other pro sports and players (ORLANDO
SENTINEL, 2/16).
     SMILE MICKEY!  The 500 is "revving up" the tourism industry
all over Central Florida and is estimated to bring in over
400,000 racing fans (ORLANDO SENTINEL, 2/16).