The Davis Cup is "implementing a new sponsorship strategy that will make tennis’ top team competition look different to television viewers," as it will use "virtual replacement advertising during broadcasts," according to Tales Azzoni of the AP. This means that sponsors’ logos and banners will be "superimposed digitally on the courts." A viewer in the U.S. will see "something different than one in Asia or one in Europe." The strategy from new Davis Cup partner Kosmos Tennis "adds flexibility to sponsors and will allow organizers to sell different sponsorship packages worldwide, widening revenue possibilities." Instead of having one presenting sponsor for the whole tournament, organizers "can sign deals with multiple companies." Global companies could "take advantage of the new model, as they can promote specific products in different markets." A car company could "advertise one vehicle in Europe and another in Asia." The technology, called “DBR,” or digital board replacement, is "already being used successfully" by La Liga, a sponsor and partner of the revamped Davis Cup. Kosmos Tennis would like to "have at least three separate regions with specific feeds in this inaugural season, expanding it to more territories and new sponsors in the coming years." The plan to use the new technology was "already in the long-term plans for Kosmos," but it was "fast-tracked after longtime Davis Cup sponsor BNP Paribas decided last month not to continue investing in the competition" (AP, 4/1).
Marketing and Sponsorship
Roger Federer is "still in the early days of his deal" with clothing brand Uniqlo, and while his line of replica wear has yet to hit store floors, he is "appealingly straightforward" in his assessment of tennis fashion, according to Leigh Nordstrom of WOMEN'S WEAR DAILY. Federer, who claimed his 101th career ATP title yesterday at the Miami Open, said, "We have some awful tennis-looking outfits sometimes. They’ve just gone too far in the wrong direction. They want to make it look too much like a modern tennis shirt that is completely wrong, in terms of designs. Like a truck drove over it." He added, "If we work on that, to redesign that, which looks nice and crisp and new and fresh, that’s really important to me. I’ve really just tried to elevate the style, the level of that in tennis and hope that resonates also with the new generation." Federer: "Tennis is doing great in terms of style. I think a lot of players could do better, but maybe it’s also their approach to be really loud and going with neon." Nordstrom notes while Federer "doesn’t mention Nike by name," the move to Uniqlo has allowed him to "elevate his off-court, on-duty style" (WWD.com, 4/1).
Rugs with the March Madness logo on them that are in every team locker room at the NCAA Tournament have been the "hottest souvenir" for players and team staffers, and the fact that they are not for sale "makes them even more desirable," according to Bachman & Chairusmi of the WALL STREET JOURNAL. The three-by-five-foot rugs are "officially supposed to stay put," but among tournament participants, there is a "fair amount of confusion about the rules." Even the NCAA is "confused about what’s supposed to stay at the sites and what can be carted away." NCAA Men's Basketball Championship Dir Ron English had said that the rugs were "among the items teams were allowed to take." However, NCAA Media Coordination & Statistics Dir David Worlock later said that the "rugs are a no-go." Worlock did say that the NCAA Tournament-branded towels that are used during the event are "fair game." Texas Tech Assistant Equipment Manager Collin Prentiss said that the team "quietly hoards as many tournament-branded towels as it can" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 4/1).