AT&T has signed a four-year, multimedia deal with Walt
Disney Co.'s ESPN and ABC Sports, according to Beth Snyder
of AD AGE. The deal, worth "an estimated" $20-30M annually,
cuts across 15 properties of ESPN and ABC Sports. A new
N.Y.-based unit, AT&T Edge, will be involved in deciding how
advertising will be allocated across the Disney properties,
which include ABC's "Monday Night Football," ESPN's "Sunday
Night Football," ESPN Magazine, ESPN radio, The Espy Awards
and ESPN SportsZone. Snyder reports that the deal marks the
first time the two Disney sports properties have worked
together with an advertiser in an "extensive" partnership.
AT&T hopes to reach males and college students in its
partnership (Beth Snyder, ADVERTISING AGE, 6/29).
AD AGE lists its "Marketing 100," a salute to "those
visionaries who latch onto an idea, run with it and achieve
their goal of greater sales or recognition." Among those on
this year's list: NBA Exec VP/CMO Rick Welts; Callaway Golf
Sales President Bruce Parker; NASCAR VP/Marketing George
Pyne; Kobe Bryant's agent Arn Tellem; adidas Dir of
Marketing & Sales Bob Nagel; and SportsLine USA Founder &
President Michael Levy (AD AGE, 6/29 issue)....The Amateur
Athletic Union (AAU) has retained NJ-based ISI to handle new
business development in sponsorship sales, the marketing of
TV rights and strategic consultation for AAU's more than 250
sports-specific national championships and 2,500 sanctioned
events (AAU)....Canon USA has inked a four-year contract
extension to title sponsor the PGA Tour's Canon Greater
Hartford Open through 2002 (HARTFORD COURANT, 6/30)....Nike
on Monday sought dismissal of a CA lawsuit which claims its
execs mislead consumers on working conditions at its Asian-
contracted factories. Nike has filed a motion in S.F.
County Superior Court, requesting that the case be put on
hold until its argument for dismissal can be heard
(REUTERS/L.A. TIMES, 6/30). Nike spokesperson Vada Manager:
"The request by the plaintiff is to produce at the minimum
about 46 million documents, which we find somewhat onerous."
Among the documents requested are pay stubs for about
500,000 workers for more than seven years (USA TODAY, 6/30).
CART and CT-based ISL have extended their marketing
relationship and ISL will be the exclusive worldwide
marketing agent for the sale of all sponsorships of CART's
open wheel racing series -- the FedEx Championship Series,
PPG Dayton Indy Lights Series and the Kool Toyota Atlantic
Championship -- until 2007. The nine-year deal is worth a
minimum of $215-235M. ISL was previously responsible for
selling a limited number of sponsorships for the FedEx
Championship Series. Darren Marshall, Senior VP/Int'l Motor
Sports & GM of ISL USA, will oversee the new unit (CART).
Individual CART teams will still be able to sell their own
sponsorships (Bill Koenig, INDIANAPOLIS STAR-NEWS, 6/30).
Reebok "is out" as an NFL Pro Line licensee as of the
'99 season and will lose the sideline TV exposure
accompanying the "top-tier NFL apparel license," according
to Terry Lefton of BRANDWEEK. The move comes as Reebok
continues to pull back much of its sports marketing
activity, "further fueling the widely held industry belief
that it will eventually exit sports apparel licensing
altogether." In related news, Lefton adds that adidas,
which gets on the sidelines this season via the Bucs, "is
expected to add" the Patriots and Redskins, now Starter
teams, to its portfolio in '99 (BRANDWEEK, 6/29 issue).
MasterCard Int'l has launched "MasterCard's Major
League Summer," the latest in a series of MLB-based promos,
which offers consumers the chance to win a decade's worth of
All-Star Game tickets and $50,000 in cash as the grand
prize. Consumers also receive instant "Value Card" savings
by using MasterCard at such stores as the Foot Locker chain,
Radio Shack and Sam Goody and Musicland. To support the
promo locally, MasterCard has signed seven teams to multi-
year sponsorship deals -- the Braves, Orioles, Red Sox,
Indians, Dodgers, Mets and Cardinals. MasterCard will serve
as the preferred card of each team and will further build
affinity card programs with each team's member bank
(MasterCard). BRANDWEEK's Terry Lefton reports that
MasterCard will break an ad for the program, featuring MLB
players, later this summer (BRANDWEEK, 6/29 issue).
HOWARD'S END: MLB's new VP/Licensing Howard Smith is
interviewed by BRANDWEEK's Lefton. Smith said that sales of
MLB licensed apparel are "up, but the game still isn't close
to where it has been in the past in terms of its overall
appeal. The fashion stuff is working and I expect that to
continue for the rest of the season. Other than that, kids
and women are big targets for us" (BRANDWEEK, 6/29).
WE'VE GOT ... HOSPITALITY: In Denver, Michele Conklin
examines corporate involvement around MLB's All-Star Game.
Dozens of CO corporations, such as Bank One, Coors Brewing
and the Rocky Mountain News are laying out "tens of
thousands of dollars to bring clients and employees" to the
game and surrounding events. Bank One, a national sponsor
of the game and a Rockies team sponsor, will spend "about"
$200,000 on its efforts. Bank One considers the price "well
worth it," as its own research shows that consumers "are
three times more likely to want to bank with the company if
they are aware" of its relationship with the Rockies. In
addition, Bank One is giving out 132 game tickets to
consumers and another 60 tickets to employees "who help
generate new business" (ROCKY MOUNTAIN NEWS, 6/29).