Panasonic Will Not Renew Sponsorship Deal With Japanese Golfer Ishikawa
Japanese golfer Ryo Ishikawa "lost his major sponsor" when electronics manufacturer Panasonic announced it would not renew a deal with him next month, according to the AFP. Panasonic, forecast to "book a mammoth $9.6B net loss in the current fiscal year in the process of overhauling its business, also said it would stop sponsoring a domestic golf tournament after next year." In a statement the company said, "Our company has supported golfer Ishikawa for five years with the aim of backing young people in their global challenges." Ishikawa signed a five-year sponsorship deal with the company in Jan. '08. The value of the deal was estimated at 500M yen ($6M). The company also said that it would end sponsorship of the Panasonic Open after its sixth annual edition next September as the company is "undertaking various streamlining efforts" to rebuild its business. Panasonic has also "stopped bankrolling" women's badminton and men's basketball teams (AFP, 12/13).