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Volume 26 No. 231
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Honda Renews Longstanding NHL Deal Through '21-22 Season

Honda’s partnership with the NHL started domestically with the '07-08 season, then came to Canada in '14-15
Photo: GETTY IMAGES
Honda’s partnership with the NHL started domestically with the '07-08 season, then came to Canada in '14-15
Photo: GETTY IMAGES
Honda’s partnership with the NHL started domestically with the '07-08 season, then came to Canada in '14-15
Photo: GETTY IMAGES

The NHL and Honda have renewed their long-standing partnership through the '21-22 season, as the brand remains the league’s official automotive partner in the U.S. and Canada. Honda’s partnership with the NHL initiated at the beginning of the '07-08 season, first domestically and then expanding to Canada in '14-15. Terms of the renewal were not disclosed. Through the league relationship, Honda will continue as title sponsor of NHL All-Star Weekend and will be one of the in-ice presenting partners of the Winter Classic, Stadium Series and Heritage Classic. Additionally, during the regular season and playoffs, the company will have brand visibility on dasherboards for all nationally televised games in the U.S. Honda also will be tied to the NHL’s esports initiative. “What we love about Honda, candidly, is they are a model partner for us,” said NHL Group VP/Partnership Marketing Evin Dobson. “They step up and activate in all of the ways we’d want them to. They are present with our clubs, they spend generously with our media partners on a local and national level and they have a presence at some of our crown jewel events.” The partnership structure largely remains the same, and Dobson said, “That’s a tribute to both parties as we’ve found the right playbook, if you will, that enables Honda to extract extra value.”

DEAL DETAILS: Honda’s title sponsorship for All-Star Weekend began in '14. The brand’s integration is arguably the most visibility it will receive at a league tentpole event. Honda will award the game’s MVP with a vehicle, be featured on-ice, throughout the venue and even in the locker room and also receive custom branding of the zamboni, among other activation components. “We try to show a little bit more breadth of what Honda stands for” at NHL All-Star Weekend, Honda National Advertising Manager Meliza Humphrey said. In years past, for example, Humphrey explained that Honda showed their integration with IndyCar and racing by having a special IndyCar wrapped with the theme of All-Star and had a driver present on-site for autographs and pictures. She said Honda is “keeping its fingers crossed” the brand can mirror that activation next year in St. Louis. Based on company data, Humphrey said, Honda customers index “very high” with the NHL, and as a result, the league partnership allows the company to reach not only hockey fans but also some of their customer base.