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Volume 10 No. 25

Marketing and Sponsorship

The Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) has "further strengthened its commercial portfolio ahead of the country’s staging of the 2014 FIFA World Cup" by agreeing to an eight-year extension to its sponsorship deal with banking group Itau, according to SOCCEREX. Itau will back the Brazilian national team through Oct. '22 under the new agreement, "the financial terms of which were undisclosed." The previous contract was due to expire in October. CBF President Jose Maria Marin has "overseen five new sponsorship acquisitions for the national governing body since stepping into the role last year" but the Itau deal is the first "extension of terms under his stewardship." Marin: "The extension of this agreement with an institution that has the size and expression of Itau, is an eloquent demonstration of confidence in our work and the prestige and strength of our squad." The CBF made Samsung its 13th commercial partner in September ahead of the World Cup next summer. Airline Gol Linhas Aereas, health services firm Unimed Seguros and food company Sadia also "joined its roster earlier this year," while MasterCard struck a deal in '12 (SOCCEREX, 11/13). DIARIO DE GUARAPUAVA reported Itau "has sponsored the Brazilian national team" since '08 (DIARIO DE GUARAPUAVA, 11/13).

Indian int'l cricketer Rohit Sharma is "one of the most sought after" cricketers in India, according to Balachandran & Malvania of the Indian BUSINESS STANDARD. Sharma will sign a Rs 2 crore ($313,000) deal with adidas "to sport their brand on his bat." Sharma was "seen walking onto the field" with adidas branding on his bat and jersey Wednesday. The brand "is currently endorsed by" fellow cricketer Sachin Tendulkar. A source said, "The whole idea is to introduce Sharma as Sachin's protege." Additionally, Sharma "is also expected to endorse a number of brands" and is likely to charge anything between Rs 75 lakh ($118,500) to Rs 1 crore ($157,000) per endorsement annually. Kwan Entertainment & Marketing Solutions COO Indranil Das Blah said, “Rohit is not a newcomer. He has been around for more than five years and his biggest problem was his inconsistent on-field performance even though he had tremendous talent. And now that he has backed up that potential with performances, his brand value is certainly seeing a surge." According to media buyers and planners, enquiries "have been on the rise from companies including Mobile handset makers, real estate developers, and clothing companies over the past few months and a number of deals are expected to be signed in the next three months." Balaji Spark Business Head Firoz Engineer said, “The timing, in my opinion, for Rohit could not have been better. He has had a very good year in all formats of the game. He has proved that he is maturing with each game. This makes him good choice for services and products like insurance, technology and real estate” (BUSINESS STANDARD, 11/13).

QUITE THE TEST: In Mumbai, Divyesh Singh reported the security measures taken by the Mumbai police for Tendulkar's 200th and final Test include "three deputy commissioners of police, 850 policemen -- including the ones from traffic and special branch -- 18 assistant commissioners of police, 35 police inspectors, 90 sub inspectors, 200 lady police officials, six teams of Bomb Detection and Disposal Squad (BDDS), 12 teams of Quick Response Team (QRT), 16 marksman vehicles, six companies of SRPF and 352 CCTV cameras" (MUMBAI MIRROR, 11/13).

When Mexico took the pitch at Azteca stadium in Mexico City Wednesday against New Zealand, there was an estimated $600M at stake, according to Darren Rovell of ESPN. That is because "major players like Univision and adidas have invested so heavily in what they believed would be a sure bet, but turned into a huge gamble." Mexico moved a step closer to qualification for the 2014 World Cup with a 5-1 win. The win meant "just as much on the bottom line." There is TV Azteca, which paid $100M for the TV rights to "broadcast the 2010 and 2014 World Cups in Mexico." There is Univision, which paid $325M for the "Spanish language rights to broadcast the same games" in the U.S. And sponsors like Coca-Cola, Banamex, Movistar and adidas pay roughly $300M for "a four-year sponsor package" sold by Mexico's national football federation. Sports marketing firm DreaMatch Solutions Dir Rogelio Roa said, "I would say that the atmosphere between all the stakeholders and sponsors, it’s about doubts, it’s about uncertainty and it’s about questions. No one would have suspected that, at this point, Mexico wouldn't have a spot in the World Cup." The sponsor "with the most on the line is unquestionably adidas, which sold 1.2 million El Tri jerseys" in '10, more than "any of its other teams including the eventual champion, Spain." Adidas North America Head of Soccer Ernesto Bruce said, "Mexico is our prize possession." Officials with Coca-Cola in Mexico, which has sponsored the Mexican team for 40 years, said that its plans to "activate their sponsorship would be the same 'in spite of the results of each country.'" But one could "safely assume that the marketing wouldn't be nearly as effective if El Tri weren't playing in the World Cup." Ad agency Marketing Deportivo General Dir of Business Hussein Forzan said, "The least affected party would be the football federation because they've already gotten paid. Television is the most exposed, followed by the sponsors who have been involved by this World Cup cycle" (ESPN, 11/1). In Madrid, Rubén Rodríguez reported Mexico's "possible World Cup absence" would cause a loss of  nearly $50M. Based on calculations by Helio Silva Filho, the Secretary of Economy, Finance and Sports at the Brazilian embassy in Mexico, "more than 50,000 Mexicans will visit Brazil during the World Cup, with an average spending of at least $1,000 per person" (EL CONFIDENCIAL, 11/13).

IMG Media "has contracted Arqiva" to distribute the Premier League globally in high definition, according to RAPID TV NEWS. Under the terms of the three-year deal, the communications infrastructure and media services company "will provide the encoding, encryption and satellite capacity to support the football’s global delivery." Arqiva is to implement new distribution technology using “roll-off filtering” technology. This is "said to facilitate the transmission of a higher bit-rate, without the need to increase satellite bandwidth, equivalent to a 15% improvement in efficiency." Arqiva "will be the sole distributor of approximately 190 of the key live fixtures globally per season." This distribution includes "the delivery of three channel multiplexes comprising of the match feed, a fixed wide shot (for studio backdrops) and an interview/ISO." Additionally, Arqiva "will distribute the 24/7 HD Content Service into Asia and the Americas" (RAPID TV NEWS, 11/13).

The European Tour and Rolex have extended their partnership through '22, which includes the Ryder Cup. Rolex has sponsored the European Tour since '97 (European Tour). GOLF MONTHLY's Robin Barwick reported European Tour CEO George O'Grady described the partnership as "a big leap financially," and a "great confidence booster" for the European Tour on "an amazing day." O'Grady: "Rolex is going to remain involved in the Ryder Cup. But more than that, Rolex is backing all our tours; the European Tour, Senior Tour and Challenge Tour" (GOLF MONTHLY, 11/13).

The Spanish national football team's uniform for the 2014 World Cup "will be more red than ever," according to Estepa & García of MARCA. Nearly the entire uniform will be red, "and it will be the first time the Spanish team's outfit will be only one color." The entire roster and "coaching staff attended the presentation of the uniform" (MARCA, 11/13). In Barcelona, Polo & Torelló reported Nike has Barcelona's uniform designs ready for the '14-15 season. The team's primary jerseys will make a change "to have three stripes instead of four." Barcelona's alternate "uniforms will be orange-reddish" (MUNDO DEPORTIVO, 11/13).