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Volume 6 No. 216

Marketing and Sponsorship

The England Cricket team "will be sponsored by U.K. grocery chain Waitrose" for three years starting in '14, according to Bob Bensch of BLOOMBERG. Waitrose, part of John Lewis Partnership Plc, "will have its logo on all England teams' apparel, advertisements on the cricket grounds and access to team members for marketing." Financial terms of the agreement were not "disclosed in a statement from the England and Wales Cricket Board." The London Telegraph had earlier reported it was worth more than £20M ($31M) (BLOOMBERG 5/9). MARKETING WEEK reported the Waitrose logo "will appear on England's men and women's teams' full match and training gear" from May '14 until '16, in a deal that will take in multiple Test Series, the ICC World Cup, T20 World Cup and the 2016 Tour of South Africa. Current sponsor Brit "will remain the England team sponsor" until April '14. As part of the agreement, Waitrose will be allowed to advertise in int'l cricket grounds and "allowed access to England players for commercial and marketing purposes." According to the ECB, the tie-up comes as the board's various commercial tie-ups, "with brands including Jaguar, adidas, ASDA and TM Lewin," approaches the £14M ($21M) per annum mark, growing by 50% in the past five years (MARKETING WEEK, 5/9).

WAITROSE EXTENDS READING DEAL: Recently relegated EPL side Reading FC has extended its sponsorship with Waitrose through the end of the '14-15 season. As part of its sponsorship of the '13-'14 and '14-'15 seasons, Waitrose’s name will continue to appear on the team’s home and away kits. Waitrose special offers will be available to season ticket holders, and the supermarket will supply food for the players’ away matches (Reading).

New Zealand-based sports apparel company Canterbury has been confirmed as the official sportswear supplier to the Rugby Players' Association as part of a multiyear partnership (Canterbury). ... La Liga club Atletico Madrid's sponsorship deal with the Republic of Azerbaijan "may play a key role in funding a summer move for Liverpool's Luis Suarez." Atletico will allegedly ask for €6M ($7.8M) a year from the Republic of Azerbaijan, which it "signed a sponsorship deal with in December, to help pay Suarez' wages, in a bid to financially tempt him away from Liverpool" (FOOTBALL ESPANA, 5/8). ... The Pakistan Football Federation on Tuesday "signed a contract for a long term strategic partnership with Forward Sports International" as the uniform, kit and gear sponsors of Pakistan football (PAKISTAN OBSERVER, 5/8). ... West Indian cricketer Chris Gayle was "named ambassador of Patna-based real estate company Agrani Homes" (PTI, 5/8).