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Volume 24 No. 113

Sponsorships Advertising Marketing

     Dr Pepper/Cadbury of North America has signed a four-year
deal as the title sponsor of the Big 12 Conference championship
football game.  Big 12 Commissioner Steve Hatchell said the deal
was "significant -- worth seven figures woven into the deal with
ABC" -- but exact terms were not disclosed.  ABC is expected to
pay $4M annually for the rights to the game, which include Dr
Pepper's fee of at least $1M each year (Steve Richardson, DALLAS
MORNING NEWS, 4/23).  Phillips 66 has signed a two-year deal
worth between $500,000 and $750,000 annually to be the title
sponsor of the Big 12 men's basketball tournament.  Host
Communications has signed as marketing agent and will also handle
development of the conference's multi-state radio network.  The
Collegiate Licensing Company of Atlanta has signed to license Big
12 tournament merchandise such as t-shirts and jerseys (Steve
Richardson, DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 4/23).

     Coors Brewing may be prohibited from co-sponsoring a
downhill ski series with Chrysler's Jeep/Eagle division because
of the need to "separate drinking from driving," according to
BRANDWEEK.  Coors had expressed an interest in becoming part of
the Jeep King of the Mountain downhill ski series, but the car
company has "done less than jump at the proposition."  A Jeep
exec said the company is "leery" of a partnership with an alcohol
seller.  The series was composed of five races this past winter
at resorts in CO, CA, UT, and VT, and current associate sponsors
include Visa, Hawaiian Tropic, Sabastian Haircare Products and
Longines watches.  Jeep/Eagle Marketing Manager Lou Bitonti said,
while not immediately embracing Coors' request, Jeep has not
ruled it out (Trevor Jensen, BRANDWEEK, 4/22 issue).

     First Union and NationsBank are quickly becoming "pivotal
players" in the sports finance arena, according to the CHARLOTTE
BUSINESS JOURNAL.  Erik Spanberg writes the Hornets and Panthers
helped "pave the way" for the banks' entry into the market, and
First Union and NationsBank now have national reputations.
NationsBank Senior VP Jim Nash, head of the bank's Sports Finance
Division, says sports provides a high-profile platform for the
bank in local communities.  First Union spokesperson Marianna
Sheridan said sports finance became a natural expansion area as
the value of teams and franchises grew.  She notes there are so
many teams in markets First Union serves, "it's hard to ignore,
particularly because it's a successful and profitable business."
First Union and NationsBank both have finance divisions dedicated
to sports, and Hornets President Spencer Stolpen says the two
banks -- along with Fleet National Bank, Bank of America,
Chemical Banking Corp. and Citicorp -- are consistently mentioned
in industry circles as the leading banks in funding teams and
facilities.  Overall, First Union has made about $470M in sports
financing commitments and has just under $200M in sports loans on
record.  NationsBank "refuses" to disclose its commitments

     Huffy Bicycles is trying to "burnish" its image among more
"particular" bike consumers with two new lines under the Ironman
name, according to BRANDWEEK.  Huffy's licensing deal with
Ironman Properties looks to capitalize on Huffy's "largely
unrecognized" expertise.  Huffy Marketing VP Bill Smith says with
high-end bikes showing the only growth in a flat industry, Huffy
can pick up on Ironman's "core equities" of performance,
endurance and durability.  Ironman hopes to move away from
straight sponsorships in favor of "high-visibility" licensing
deals modeled on the successful Timex Ironman watches.  Ironman
has signed a similar shoe deal with Reebok (Gerry Khermouch,
BRANDWEEK, 4/22 issue).

     John Nuveen & Co. announced it has acquired a multi-year
title sponsorship of the Champions Tour, the men's over-35 tennis
circuit.  The newly named Nuveen Tour will feature 13 events held
throughout the year on four continents with players competing for
$2.5M in prize money.  Ray Benton, who founded the tour, said the
marketing deal "will further elevate the concept of men's over-35
tennis" (Champions Tour).  USA TODAY's Michael Hiestand notes
Nuveen will pay $1.5M annually for title rights (USA TODAY,
4/23).  John Lotka, Nuveen's VP/Advertising and Promotion, told
THE DAILY the deal was for three years with options.  The
Chicago-based investment banking firm has been involved with the
tour since '94, and Lotka said, "It has been a very good match
both for our target audience of financial advisors and their
clients. ... We've been pleasantly surprised at each stage of the
process."  He added Nuveen saw "a real consistency with the way
all the events came off and what we've received, and that
attracted us to title sponsorship."  Lotka said Nuveen will work
with other tour sponsors, including U.S. News & World Report and
Coopers & Lybrand, to increase promotion of the tour, including a
major media buy to promote certain events.  Lotka: "We are
interested in seeing the tour get more recognition from the
media."  The deal was assisted by Chicago-based Frankel Sports
Group, who advised and managed the program from the outset (THE

     Kroger has signed a deal with Atlanta's AT&T Challenge
tennis tournament in a marketing program to benefit Kroger
vendors and Atlanta's Scottish Rite Children's Hospital. The
Kroger vendor program is a vehicle for bringing other food
marketers into the tournament.  Participating vendors will become
sponsors of the event, as official soft drink or snack food, for
example, and will receive in-store, radio and other promotional
benefits in Kroger stores throughout the Atlanta area. In
addition 25% of each vendor sponsorship will go to Scottish Rite.
NationsBank, a banking partner of Kroger, has become the official
commercial bank of the tournament.  As such, NationsBank will
provide ATM's on-site at the Atlanta Athletic Club (The AT&T

     Compaq Computer will sponsor the Compaq World Putting
Championship, a new grass roots event developed in conjunction
with putt-master Dave Pelz.  ESPN will televise the competition
and supporting sponsors include Golfweek magazine, USA Today,
Titleist golf balls, and the PGA and LPGA Tours (BRANDWEEK,
4/22)....Converse is profiled in the BOSTON HERALD.  Steff
Gelston notes the shoemaker has "geared up for the next step in
its turnaround" with recent management changes including the
appointment of former Nike head of research Ned Frederick to head
R&D and the replacement of retiring Chair & CEO Gib Ford with
sporting goods veteran Glenn Rupp (BOSTON HERALD, 4/22)....L.A.-
based product placement company Premier Entertainment had NFL
products air 80 times on network TV since September.  That
translates into $19M in paid ad rates (USA TODAY, 4/23).... Coca-
Cola is test-marketing a new drink called "Urge" in Norway.  The
brand is targeted to compete against Mountain Dew in the U.S.
(CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 4/23)....Nike is profiled in the "Heard on the
Street" column in the WALL STREET JOURNAL.  Morgan Stanley
shoe/clothing analyst Josie Esquivel, on the broad appeal of
Nike's name:  "People are starting to realize that maybe this
company should be treated as a consumer brand rather than a
footwear company" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 4/23)....Chicago
attorneys Richard Colombik and Mike Whelan unsuccessfully tried
to trademark the phrase "Four-Peat" after the Bulls won their
third straight NBA championship.  They have since trademarked the
phrase, "Four of a Kind" (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 4/22).

     The Orlando Area Sports Commission (OASC) "resembled a
charity of sorts" in its early days, according to a profile in
the ORLANDO SENTINEL.  It barely survived on the public "dole and
donations" from companies that supported its efforts to attract
sports events to Central FL.  Since then, the OASC decided to
raise funds by offering companies a chance to advertise at its
events.  Also, since OASC President Randy Johnson became
president eight months ago and began selling sponsorships, the
OASC has generated nearly $68,000 in revenue, almost twice that
collected in the previous twelve months.  The "more-aggressive
pursuit of private dollars" has also influenced new localities to
join to provide OASC with $327,500, a 7% increase from last year
(Gene Yasuda, ORLANDO SENTINEL, 4/22).

     In an "Outside the Lines" special entitled, "Sports, Inc.,"
ESPN's Bob Ley reported on the "modern incorporated athlete" and
how, in the "booming" sports marketing industry, many superstars
make more money off the field through sponsorships and
endorsements than they do playing. From the original model
fashioned by Arnold Palmer to Shaquille O'Neal's current world of
"cameras, commercials and devastating dunks," the show focused on
the marketing efforts of several big name stars and reflected on
the growing dichotomy of today's athletes.  Frank Deford:  "We
are seeing the creation of two classes of star athletes:  the
privileged ones who get heavy-duty endorsement money and the dull
ones, who have to compete for a living."
     FACTS OF NOTE:  Last year Ken Griffey Jr.'s likeness earned
about $100,000 in merchandise sales for Pro Player.  This year,
that number is expected to be "well" into seven figures.  The NFL
Quarterback Club, "a powerhouse" owned by 26 former and present
QBs (Troy Aikman, John Elway, Steve Young, Boomer Esiason, Dan
Marino, and Jim Kelly) has hired NFLP to help sell its members to
corporations and sponsors. The Club recently added Emmitt Smith,
Junior Seau, Barry Sanders, Jerry Rice, and Michael Irvin.
NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt's biggest business is collectibles
and souvenirs, an industry in which he has the potential to earn
over $30M this year.  He faces no league-wide merchandising
scrutiny, as NASCAR does not require revenue-sharing among
     QUOTES OF NOTE:  Shaquille O'Neal agent Leonard Armato:
"People are a little tired of seeing one dimensional athletes and
if they see someone that has not only athletic ability but
personality and a variety of talents, it's compelling."  Pro
Player President David Strumeier:  "Ken Griffey is outselling
every player in [MLB] products by a minimum of three-to-one and
our Ken Griffey sales in the first three months of this year are
already ahead of Ken Griffey sales for the entire 1995 year
approximately by 40 to 50%."  Andre Agassi:  "You have to know
what you stand for.  You have to know why you stand for it and
you have to refuse to compromise it.  It's called integrity,
really, and not to, in a sense, whore yourself out."  NFL
Properties President Sara Levinson, on the QB Club:  "These men
recognize the potential of putting their names together into
something that is even larger than they are" (ESPN, 4/22).