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Volume 26 No. 60

Marketing and Sponsorship

Neymar has denied the allegation and claimed the woman was trying to extort him
Photo: getty images

Mastercard has "canceled an advertising campaign" featuring Brazil and PSG F Neymar after a woman "accused him of raping her in a Paris hotel," according to REUTERS. Mastercard in a statement said that it was "suspending its use of Neymar in advertising until the situation is 'cleared up.'" Neymar "denies the allegation of rape and has claimed the woman was trying to extort him" (REUTERS, 6/6). A spokesperson for Mastercard in Brazil said that the company had "planned an advertising campaign to coincide with this month’s Copa America tournament but she did not confirm reports in Brazil’s three biggest newspapers that Mastercard had decided to suspend Neymar’s featuring in it." Meanwhile, REUTERS' Balu & Simões note Nike is "very concerned" about the accusation, "raising questions about its sponsorship of one of the sport’s most famous players." Brazilian airline Gol Linhas Aereas Inteligentes SA, which featured Neymar in the run-up to the '18 World Cup, said that it was a "sponsor of the national team but not individual players." McDonald’s and P&G's Gillette brand, which both featured Neymar prominently in ad campaigns last year, said that they had "no current contract with him" (REUTERS, 6/6).

Dunkin’ is renewing its sponsorship with the NHL and will remain the official coffee, donut and breakfast sandwich of the league in the U.S. The QSR also is adding two new team deals with the Hurricanes and Golden Knights. They join a stable of teams that have a deal with Dunkin’, including both current Stanley Cup Final participants. The brand and the NHL launched their partnership at the '17 Winter Classic, and that original deal marked Dunkin’s first national sports league partnership. As part of the league deal, Dunkin’ will continue to have a significant presence across broadcast and digital platforms in the U.S., and will be prominently featured at NHL jewel events -- such as the Winter Classic, All-Star Weekend and Stadium Series -- through advertising, in-arena signage, Jumbotron displays and on-site activations. Dunkin' will have in-game dasherboard presence during all games broadcast on NBC or NBCSN. The brand and the NHL launched their partnership at the '17 Winter Classic, and that original deal marked Dunkin’s first national sports league partnership.

TIME TO MAKE THE DONUTS: Dunkin’ spent 17% of its total ad spend from Oct. 1-June 6 around NHL programming, according to an SBJ analysis of iSpot.tv data. The QSR spent a total of $64.1M on ads during that time frame that aired on national linear TV (live, time-shifted, network and cable), VOD, OTT and regional/local TV. Around $17.0M (27%) of that ad spend was earmarked for sports, and $11.1M was spent around the NHL. An ad featuring Bruins RW David Pastrnak has been in heavy rotation during NHL games on NBC and NBCSN.

Harper has national endorsements with companies including Under Armour, Gatorade and Rawlings
Photo: getty images

Phillies RF Bryce Harper's national exposure "makes him an attraction wherever he goes," and he is someone that companies "want to work with," according to Todd Zolecki of MLB.com. Harper has a 52% rate of "recognition among sports fans" in the U.S., according to Q Scores, tops among all baseball players. Licensees that had "forgotten about the Phillies the past few years suddenly found their number again and started calling" after Harper's signing. Those licensees now are "offering more creative, more interesting products, meaning the Phillies have more things to sell to fans other than just T-shirts and jerseys." Under Armour is one such company, as Harper had a pair of custom "green Phanatic spikes for Opening Day." He has also had "custom-made spikes for Jackie Robinson Day, Mother's Day and Memorial Day." Harper has "national endorsements with sports-related companies" like UA, Gatorade, Rawlings, Topps and Sony for "MLB The Show," as well as an "ownership stake in Warrior Black, which is an anti-glare product (aka eye black)." Harper also has deals with "non-sports brands like Jaguar, T-Mobile, Hallmark, Acuvue and grooming company Blind Barber." Part of Harper's strategy is that if he "uses the product, he might be interested in it." It could be "anything from cars to bone broth to gloves to vacuum cleaners" (MLB.com, 6/7).