WHAT THE DALE IS GOING ON! BIG BUCKS FROM EARNHARDT'S WIN?
The marketing of Dale Earnhardt after his Daytona 500
win was examined by Gerald Martin of the Raleigh NEWS &
OBSERVER. Earnhardt's company now has 109 Earnhardt
registered trademarks in 19 countries and the U.S. Dale
Earnhardt Inc. President Don Hawk said Earnhardt's deals are
moving into the "millions": "That's where we're headed, and
the question is whether it goes from single-digit millions
to doubles, and how far beyond that." Sporting Goods
Business Editor Andy Bernstein said, however, that Earnhardt
probably left "millions of dollars on the table" following
his Daytona 500 victory. Bernstein: "The hot-market
business (the day or two after the event), is gone. ...
That's where NASCAR has struggled." Hawk said that no
merchandise was ready following Earnhardt's Daytona win
because "he's superstitious, and he doesn't want anything
done in advance" (Raleigh NEWS & OBSERVER, 2/22). In
Charlotte, Clifford Glickman reported that Hawk had 30-40
offers for Earnhardt the day he won at Daytona, including a
Burger King commemorative cup and possible commercial, and
"some ideas" from Coca-Cola (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 2/23).
LICENSE TO DRIVE: Martin also reported that NASCAR is
in the process of streamlining its licensing, and although
it does not coordinate or have control of the marketing or
licensing of its teams, "it is working closer with them to
make what's good for one ... good for all." Team marketing
execs are working with NASCAR, especially to wipe out
counterfeits. NASCAR VP Brian France: "Our look at licensing
is a lot different than how we looked at it a few years ago.
We really weren't complementing our core business." France
added that because of fragmentation, NASCAR is still "way
short of where we need to be" (NEWS & OBSERVER, 2/22).