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Volume 10 No. 22

Marketing and Sponsorship

Global sponsorship from the airline industry has now reached $515M per year, according to a new report from Sponsorship Today. The 46-page report, which analyzes more than 260 deals across the world, shows that two carriers, Emirates and Etihad, account for almost half of the entire amount spent globally on sponsorship, with Emirates now spending $182M per year on rights fees alone. Sponsorship Today Editor Simon Rines said, "Emirates has used sponsorship as a key tool in both building brand image and informing potential customers about its route network. The annual $182M rights spend could be argued to be a very small investment compared to that spent on infrastructure." U.S. carriers continue to invest around $100M between them annually. The report shows that Europe’s "legacy" carriers have generally cut back on sponsorship spend under the pressure of big losses and increased competition. Aeroflot is now the continent’s biggest spender having taken rights to both Sochi 2014 and CSKA Moscow, with British Airways and Turkish Airlines the only other carriers to make the top 20 in sports investment. Spend among Asian-based carriers is relatively low, with Korean Air and AirAsia the most serious players (Sponsorship Today).

Top 10 spenders on sports sponsorship rights:

Airline Annual Rights Expenditure % of Total Spend
Emirates $182.56M 35%
Etihad $65.9M 13%
Aeroflot $39.75M 8%
United Airlines $30.4M 6%
Delta Airlines $28.25M 5%
British Airways $20M 4%
Turkish Airlines $19M 4%
American Airlines $16.4M 3%
Qantas $12.8M 2%
Air Canada $11.92M 2%

ManU has agreed to a three-year global partnership with Yanmar, Japan’s leading engineering company. The company is one of the world’s leading engine manufacturing companies: It has a greater than 60% share in the world’s sail-boat engine market and produces more than half of all small-size diesel engines for construction machinery. As part of the company’s corporate social responsibility policy, it has long-established links with football, even going as far as establishing its own club in Japan, and has been active supporting talented young footballers in Asia (ManU). The London DAILY MAIL wrote that the agreement will allow the club to "utilise Yanmar's expertise in their key markets worldwide and enhance their profile in Japan." In '57 the company founded the football club now known as Cerezo Osaka, which is where Japanese ManU player Shinji Kagawa started his professional career. ManU Commercial Dir Richard Arnold said, "Like Manchester United, Yanmar is steeped in history, this year celebrating a centenary of creating ground-breaking state-of-the-art technology in its field." Present at the announcement of the partnership at Old Trafford were Kagawa and teammates Robin van Persie and Javier Hernandez (DAILY MAIL, 9/14).

Bookies and sports pundits have been using the phrase "man of the match" to heap praise on the best player in a match for years, "but they may soon have to pay for the privilege," according to Katherine Rushton of the London TELEGRAPH. OFS Group, the intellectual property company that registered the trademark for the phrase in '02, is selling the rights. Bookmakers including Ladbrokes and Paddy Power and beer companies such as Budweiser and Carlsberg "have already expressed their interest in rights." The trademark is "expected to fetch a high six-figure sum." Amid expectations that the new owner "will effectively be able to penalize companies for using the phrase without consent," that number could stretch into the millions. OFS has "already made a return on the trademark" by licensing it for use on packets of KP Peanuts and McCoy’s crisps (TELEGRAPH, 9/16).

The National Rugby League Pirtek Parramatta Eels has re-signed apparel sponsor the University of New England on an upgraded deal for the '13 and '14 seasons. Eels players and the people of western Sydney will be afforded even greater access to sports science courses and facilities with UNE’s 'Future Campus' set to open on Parramatta’s Church Street next year. The agreement will see the Eels play a trial match in Armidale against the Newcastle Knights in the '13 pre-season as part of the team’s annual training camp and UNE insignia feature on the front of the Eels’ '13 game jersey. Pirtek Eels CEO Bob Bentley said that access to UNE’s state-of-the-art facility in Parramatta and the main campus facilities in Armidale, would be advantageous to Head Coach Ricky Stuart as he looks to rebuild the Eels side. Stuart said, "Our partnership with UNE not only offers our players an important pathway to furthering their educations, it gives us access to some of the best sports science facilities in the country" (Parramatta Eels).

The Brazilian Football Federation (CBF) "believes it has taken an important step" in inflating the value of sponsorships for clubs in the country, according to Guilherme Costa of The CBF said that the inflation will occur because of the creation of a U-20 Copa do Brazil in partnership with ESPN. The logic comes from the fact that the broadcaster will air 20 games live, 15 exclusively, "as well as aid in the marketing of the competition." The U-20 Copa do Brasil 2012 will take place from Oct. 2-Dec.15 with 32 clubs participating. The CBF's deal with ESPN is for five years and also includes the U-17 and U-15 Copa do Brasil, which the CBF "is working on creating." The CBF believes that "more competitions and more exposure on TV will contribute to increasing the value of sponsorship contracts" (, 9/17).

Games publisher Konami is to promote the Pro Evolution Soccer 2013 game with a "global campaign including footballer Cristiano Ronaldo," according to Loulla-Mae Eleftheriou of CAMPAIGN LIVE. Through an urban roof top party populated by a group of "Rooftop Rebels," the new Konami created game, called PES 2013, launched its campaign on Monday. The campaign is split into two parts, "with a second film acting as a big-reveal that shows Ronaldo is the brains behind the coordination of the rooftop party." The second half of the campaign is set to launch on Thursday. The campaign was created by entertainment and youth agency Frontroom and "will be supported by digital, print, outdoor and point of sale activity" (, 9/14).

Adidas Golf, a brand of the TaylorMade-adidas Golf company, announced it has been selected as an official licensee for the '12, '14 and '18 Ryder Cups, according to Jake O'Reilly of TODAY'S GOLFER. The apparel will "make up an exclusive collection that will feature the Ryder Cup logo." The collection will be made available at selected retailers across Europe as well as the merchandise tents at the '14 and '18 Ryder Cup (TODAYSGOLFER, 9/17).