Sergio García admitted a parting with TaylorMade equipment was "not solely of his own volition," with the 2017 Masters champion "hinting riches bestowed on other players impacted on contract negotiations," according to Ewan Murray of the London GUARDIAN. García will use Callaway clubs in this week’s DP World Tour Championship, "with a formal agreement between the parties imminent." The golf world "reacted with surprise" to news that García, "fresh from a maiden major success and after 15 years as a TaylorMade player," was on the lookout for a new brand. TaylorMade separated from its parent company, adidas, in May. Around the same time, Rory McIlroy signed a 10-year TaylorMade contract, worth a potential $100M. García said, "It wasn't only my decision. Obviously I spent 15 years with TaylorMade but unfortunately things come to an end." Pressed on the reasons for the split, García added, "I guess all companies change and the politics with TaylorMade have changed after leaving adidas. We couldn’t come to an agreement." Asked if he signed with Callaway, García said, “Not yet. But obviously at the moment it’s the company that’s in front of the other ones. I would say the most difficult thing to fit into your game would be the golf ball, when you have played with one for quite a while. With what we have been testing, the numbers have been really good with the balls that Callaway has brought to me" (GUARDIAN, 11/14).
Marketing and Sponsorship
The Indian Super League announced the renewal of its partnership with DHL, according to the HINDU BUSINESS LINE. It marks the company’s third year as the ISL's associate sponsor. This season, ISL has "grown to 95 matches from last year's 65," and will be played over the course of five months. DHL will be the official match ball partner for all games. It will also award the "DHL Winning Pass" to the player with the highest number of assists in each game, as well as for the entire season. The company said that it will unveil a 360-degree interactive brand campaign "specifically created" for this season. The campaign has the potential to be seen by 215 million TV viewers and 1.5 million in-stadia spectators (HINDU BUSINESS LINE, 11/13). INSIDE WORLD FOOTBALL's Mark Baber reported no value was given for the sponsorship. As well as supporting the ISL, DHL has interests in other football clubs and tournaments, "notably as sponsor" of ManU, Bayern Munich and the Copa Libertadores (INSIDE WORLD FOOTBALL, 11/14).
Musician and League Two side Notts County fan Jake Bugg "might never experience the thrill of having his name on the back of a Magpies shirt," but for the month of November, it is featured "proudly" on the front, according to the BBC. The 23-year-old has been "spreading the message about his boyhood team around the world since becoming a worldwide star," and now his name adorns the players' shirts as part of a sponsorship deal. He signed a deal with Notts in June as one of 10 month-long kit sponsors for the '17-18 season. Bugg said, "It's amazing, to see your team out there playing nice football is great. For them to do it with your name on the front is even better." Having watched from the stands at Meadow Lane in his youth, Bugg "has been able to put his fame and finance to good use in support of the club." However, there is "no appetite to go further than sponsorship at this stage of his life." Bugg: "I saw an article about the club wanting to attract investors and sponsors, it seemed like a no-brainer" (BBC, 11/13).
League Championship side Queens Park Rangers agreed to a back-of-shirt sponsorship deal with Ashville Aggregates and Ashville Concrete. The two-year deal will see Ashville Aggregates/Concrete displayed on the back of the club's home, away and third shirts during the remainder of this season as well as the '18-19 campaign (QPR).
Cricket Australia announced the renewal of a partnership between global kid's entertainment brand Nickelodeon and the Big Bash League. The one-year extension will include a range of new gameday activities and digital promotions throughout the BBL season. Nickelodoen will also bring free family entertainment to the opening weekend of the Women's BBL (CA).
Brasileiro side Atlético Paranaense signed a commercial agreement with retailer Havan. The Brazilian department store will be Paranaense's sleeve sponsor until the end of the '18 season. It will also "have a spot on the playing and coaching staff's training kits." Financial terms of the deal have not been released (SOCCEREX, 11/14).
Bundesliga side VfL Wolfsburg announced a strategic partnership with Beijing Sports University. The collaboration, which begins from the start of '18, will see the two parties "work closely together on youth development at the Chinese university." Wolfsburg will lend a technical director to the Chinese Football College at BSU as well as two coaches for the university's men's and women's teams (SOCCEREX, 11/14).
Licensing company Football DataCo secured an integrity partnership with Genius Sports and Perform Group. The agreement will enable professional league and cup competitions in England and Scotland to "benefit from two bet monitoring systems, allowing them to identify unusual patterns in global betting markets for over 5,000 matches per season." The technology will monitor odds movements across 14 different competitions (IGAMING BUSINESS, 11/14).
The ATP and Rolex announced a multi-year extension of their partnership. Rolex will continue as the official timekeeper of the ATP World Tour as well as the season-ending ATP Finals through '20 (ATP).
Health firm Randox Health agreed to a three-year deal to sponsor the Becher Chase at Aintree Racecourse starting next month. The Northern Ireland-based company already backs the Grand National and "will now sponsor the 3m2f event" (LIVERPOOL ECHO, 11/14).
The FA announced an agreement with professional services company Cognizant, which will support the governing body's new digital engagement program. Cognizant will become the official digital transformation partner of the FA Cup, the official digital transformation partner of Club Wembley and the FA's official digital partner (FA).
Ligue 1 side Girondins de Bordeaux announced Fiat Tipo as its jersey sponsor for the Coupe de la Ligue. The company will provide the club with a fleet of cars and have its logo featured on the front of Bordeaux’s shirt throughout the competition (SPORTBUZZ BUSINESS, 11/14).
Ligue 1 side Olympique Lyonnais signed a partnership with travel app Waze to help fans with travel plans to the Groupama Stadium. The app will provide information about traffic, car access and parking locations at the club’s home (SPORTBUZZ BUSINESS, 11/13).