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Volume 6 No. 213

Marketing and Sponsorship

Premier League side Swansea City has agreed to a sponsorship deal with online trading firm GWFX. The club said the deal is the largest sponsorship in its 101-year history. GWFX is a brand under Asian financial services provider Goldenway. The deal was announced at the unveiling of the club's '13-14 kit Friday (Swansea City). NBC's Kyle Bonn wrote on the Pro Soccer Talk blog that the deal for the '13-14 season is worth a "rumored" $3.3M. GWFX replaces last year's shirt sponsor 32Red, and "has an option for an extension at the end of the season." The "only bit of bad news" is that kit-maker adidas "botched the release." As a result, the home kit "isn’t available for sale just yet." Adidas said in a statement, “adidas wishes to sincerely apologise to the club and all Swansea City fans. Unfortunately there has been a delay with the delivery of the new 2013/2014 adult home shirt and some items from the new 2013/14 Swansea City training wear range due to a situation which regrettably adidas has been unable to rectify in time for the scheduled launch" (NBC, 6/30).

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) "has launched a digital campaign to promote interest in the forthcoming Ashes Test match series between England and Australia," according to Alex Brownsell of MARKETING MAGAZINE. The series, sponsored by financial services company Investec, begins at Trent Bridge in Nottingham on July 10. To drive greater engagement, the ECB is calling on sports fans to "#RISE for England." Fans tweeting messages of support using the hashtag #RISE or posting on the ECB’s Ashes microsite, "will be included on a 'Wall Of Support' in the England team room before the start of each of the Ashes Tests" (MARKETING MAGAZINE, 6/28).

Swiss investment bank UBS "has been appointed" by N.Y. Grand Prix organizers in a bid to secure $100M of funding to enable the race to go ahead in '14, according to Christian Sylt of the London TELEGRAPH. F1 circuits "typically cost" more than $250M to build, but using public roads "avoids this expense." The downside is that "there is no asset for investment to be secured on." No public funds "will be invested in the race." The UBS memorandum states that the funding "is required to complete the engineering work and build the Club of America VIP hospitality area, where guests will get a close-up view." UBS forecasts that corporate hospitality tickets will cost $4,255 each and, along with general admission, will generate 80% of revenues. It added that "the average ticket price is expected to be" around £358 ($563), compared to £288 ($438) at the British Grand Prix Sunday (TELEGRAPH, 6/30).

Marussia F1 team has announced a partnership with League Championship Reading FC, according to Andrew Gwilym of the PA. The alliance "will include significant branding exposure in their respective fields as well as marketing and promotional initiatives." The Reading badge was displayed on the Marussias of Max Chilton and Jules Bianchi, "while the Marussia logo will appear on the reverse of the Royals' jersey during the upcoming season." Both teams "are under Russian ownership" -- Banbury-based Marussia is owned by the carmaker of the same name, while businessman Anton Zingarevich holds the reins at the Royals (PA, 6/30). REUTERS' Alan Baldwin reported Marussia said that the partnership "would see both promote the other through joint marketing initiatives," while also collaborating on fitness, nutrition and coaching programs. Two other F1 teams "already have close ties to football clubs." Swiss-based Sauber last year announced a partnership with EPL Chelsea, which is owned by Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich. Back-markers Caterham is owned by Malaysian aviation entrepreneur Tony Fernandes, whose Queens Park Rangers side was relegated with Reading. Its cars carry the QPR badge (REUTERS, 6/30).

Bundesliga club Hertha BSC Berlin has extended its exclusive partnership with Coca-Cola for another three years. The soft-drink producer will retain the distribution rights for non-alcoholic beverages at Hertha home games in Berlin's Olympic Stadium. The deal was brokered by sports marketing agency SPORTFIVE (Hertha BSC). ... Second Bundesliga side FC Energie Cottbus has signed a kit deal with sportswear company Saller. The deal will start with the '13-14 season and run through June '16 (Energie Cottbus). ... Liga MX club Chivas de Guadalajara on Friday presented its new uniforms for the '13 season. The team's players wore the new uniforms in a presentation attended by club execs (LA AFICION, 6/28). ... U.S. technology company Belkin "has named LikeFriends as its digital agency to support its recently announced sponsorship of the male Blanco Pro Cycling Team, ahead of the Tour de France." LikeFriends "will be Belkin's first digital agency, and has been tasked with developing a campaign, which will run for the duration of the Tour de France and will be centred on Belkin's Facebook page" (CAMPAIGN LIVE, 6/28).