BLOOMBERG NEWS’ Panja & Browning noted Samsung's shirt deal with EPL club Chelsea's uniform "may hinge on the London soccer team's performance" in the May 19 UEFA Champions League final against Bayern Munich. Samsung VP & Head of Global Sports Marketing Sunny Hwang yesterday said that the company will decide whether to renew its deal "by the end of this month." The sponsorship, which began in July '05 and is worth about US$21M a year, "expires at the end of next season." Hwang said, "It's natural that Samsung should wish Chelsea could win. ... That will play an important role when we decide whether or not we renew the contract." However, Samsung in a statement said, “Our decisions do not rely on the outcome of a single event.” Data from German market research company Sport+Markt shows that the Samsung jersey sponsorship deal “is the fifth-highest in European soccer” (BLOOMBERG NEWS, 5/15).
SPINNING THE WHEELS: The Amgen Tour of California announced that Nissan has extended its sponsorship of the cycling race for two more years. The car maker will remain the official automotive sponsor through ’14. As part of the deal, Nissan will provide more than 40 vehicles for the event, including lead, operation and medical vehicles, as well as VIP cars included within the official race entourage and following the riders’ field on the course. In addition, Nissan will be featured as the sole presenting sponsor for Stages 3 and 7 (Amgen Tour of California).
GET YOUR RUN ON: In Boston, Chris Reidy reported Boston-based ad agency Arnold Worldwide is “launching new ads for New Balance” for the Minimus Ionix 3090 running shoe. The company said that the campaign “focuses on the sensory connection between a runner’s body and the environment the runner is in” (BOSTON.com, 5/15).
NO MORE SLIPPERY SLOPES: The NCAA men's and women's basketball rules committees this week announced that they are “recommending a change that requires basketball courts be ‘of a consistent surface’ so that player safety is not compromised.” CBSSPORTS.com’s Gary Parrish noted the change “must now be approved by the playing rules oversight panel next month.” The recommendation comes after Michigan State F Branden Dawson slipped on the center-court logo during the Quicken Loans Carrier Classic in November (CBSSPORTS.com, 5/15).