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Volume 6 No. 214

Marketing and Sponsorship

The National Rugby League has partnered with Australian automaker, Holden, in a three-year deal. Holden will support every level of the game, from grassroots communities to the top Australian Rugby League team, the Holden Kangaroos. The deal will see Holden become the major sponsor of prizes for the game's annual Monster Raffle, which has raised more than A$2M ($2.1M) for grassroots clubs across the country. This year, Holden will donate two cars as the top major prizes. The U20 competition will become the Holden Cup and Holden U20s State of Origin and will remain focused on developing not only the rugby talents of the players but also their career education. Additionally, State of Origin -- the biggest and most watched annual series in Australian sport -- will become the Holden State of Origin Series. On the int'l stage, Holden will partner with the Australian Test team, with the Holden Kangaroos embarking on an exciting season that includes Canberra’s Centenary celebrations Test against New Zealand and the Rugby League World Cup starting in October in the U.K., Ireland and France (NRL). NEWS LTD. NETWORK's Joshua Dowling reported Holden snatched the sponsorship "from market leader Toyota." Holden "is understood to have spent" A$10M over three years to become the official automotive partner of the league. The deal is Holden's first rugby sponsorship in 15 years. Holden's deal is "believed to be worth more than twice as much as the car maker spends on V8 Supercars" (NEW LTD. NETWORK, 1/31).

Brasileiro club Santos has agreed to a "one game sponsorship with an electronics company" for Sunday's game against São Paulo, according to Rodolfo Gomes of MAQUINA DO ESPORTE. The company, whose name has not yet be released, "is also studying the possibility of extending the contract and becoming the title sponsor of the club for the entire '13 season." If these negotiations go well, the club will not charge the company for sponsoring Sunday's match. Santos is asking close to R$20M ($10M) annually to "become the team's title sponsor" (MAQUINA DO ESPORTE, 1/30).

The Rugby Football Union and IBM announced a new five-year agreement. As official analytics partner for the RFU, IBM will implement the IBM TryTracker, an analytics solution to provide fans with real-time insights into the game, including information about individual performance by players. The IBM TryTracker will include the "Keys to the Game," to provide play-by-play insights during the game, and predict three crucial areas of performance specific to each team ahead of match day (RFU). ... German 2nd Bundesliga club Dynamo Dresden and IT company Schröder Systeme have increased their long-standing partnership. As a new exclusive partner of the club, Schröder Systeme will increase its ad presence at the glücksgas stadium. The deal was brokered by sports marketing company SPORTFIVE (Dynamo Dresden). ... Australian Football League club Collingwood and Lexus Australia have parted ways after almost a decade (Collingwood). ... The Qatar Tennis Federation signed on gas company Total as its partner for the Qatar National 2013 Youth Tournament, which begins Friday and goes through Tuesday at the Khalifa Int'l Tennis & Squash Complex (QTF). ... Korean Air has been named an official sponsor of the 2013 PyeongChang Special Olympics. The $300,000 deal will see the airline offer people from developing countries the opportunity to attend the Winter Games by providing airline tickets (Korean Air).

MORE IS BETTER: The Int'l Volleyball Federation (FIVB) has extended its exclusive marketing, tournament organizing as well as TV rights deal with the Japan Volleyball Association and Fuji TV for another eight years to stage the FIVB Volleyball World Cup in '15 and '19. JVA and Fuji TV have hosted the Volleyball World Cup since '77, and since then the event has become the second-most prestigious tournament, only behind the FIVB World Championships (FIVB). ... F1 team Scuderia Toro Rosso has renewed its sponsorship deal with Canadian plastic and chemicals company Nova Chemicals for another year. It will be the third year that Nova Chemicals has been a partner of the team (Toro Rosso).