Posted by Mark J. Miller on March 6, 2012 10:01 AM
It's estimated that more than 10,000 athletes from 200-plus nations will be competing in this summer’s Olympics in London, but there will be an even fiercer competition going on behind the scenes.
Ambush marketing, the art of getting your corporation’s name attached to an event without spending the kazillions involved in officially doing so, could be entering its heyday with the London Games — even though organizers and lawmakers have made all sorts of rules and regulations against such things happening in order to protect the companies that have already forked over big bucks (and powerful pounds) to be involved.Continue reading...
follow the money
Posted by Mark J. Miller on January 23, 2012 02:02 PM
If there is one thing a soccer fan likes to have at the match, it’s a beer. And if there’s one thing that big-event organizers love to have, it's major corporate sponsorship.
The former is what led FIFA to inform the next two countries scheduled to hold the men’s World Cup to “drop restrictions on beer sales in stadiums,” according to the Los Angeles Times.
"Alcoholic drinks are part of the FIFA World Cup, so we're going to have them. Excuse me if I sound a bit arrogant but that's something we won't negotiate," FIFA General Secretary Jerome Valcke commented at a press conference in Brazil, the BBC reports.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on December 7, 2011 02:02 PM
The quadrennial FIFA men’s World Cup always has a huge international draw on television, but the numbers watching in India are growing. It is estimated that in the first two days of last year’s Cup, 20 million people watched in India, a 35% increase from 2006, according to the Times of India. Before the Cup ended, the paper notes, 287 people in India had watched the event.
Those kinds of numbers have some thinking that India “will become the largest football-consuming nation in the world,” the paper notes. Those kinds of numbers and that kind of interest, of course, have businesses looking to capitalize. The Times reports that “several English football clubs are entering into licensing arrangements with Indian partners to deliver a complete football lifestyle experience.”
Manchester United, the Premier League’s version of the New York Yankees with the most league titles (19) and a steady stream of big-name players, has been the most aggressive in India, partnering with Future Group-owned Indus League Clothing to create “exclusive ManU branded stores” that’ll carry everything from jerseys and refrigerator magnets to slippers for the more refined fans.Continue reading...
sports in the spotlight
Posted by Mark J. Miller on November 17, 2011 05:09 PM
When Qatar was awarded the first World Cup to ever take place in the Middle East, some eyebrows were raised because, well, it’s going to be 110 degrees Fahrenheit in the shade when the games take place during the summer months and the country only has one stadium that was deemed worthy enough to use.
Still, the country has until 2022 to work out these problems. Part of its bid promised that it would build nine of the most gorgeous stadia you’ve ever seen. They will be air-conditioned to ensure the good feeling and health of the players and fans alike. Also, some are promised to be modular so that they can be taken apart after the Cup and sent along to developing countries so they can enjoy them along with their Texas Rangers 2011 World Series champs T-shirts.
So who is going to build these lovely places? The BBC reports that “over 90% of Qatar's workforce is made up of foreign migrant workers, many of them from South and East Asia,” and several labor unions argue that the workers are not being treated humanely and that, in fact, it's a modern-day form of slavery.Continue reading...
sports in the spotlight
Posted by Mark J. Miller on November 7, 2011 10:01 AM
FIFA, the organizing body of world soccer, dug itself a massive PR hole this past spring when a cash-for-votes scandal was unearthed. It left Asia’s former soccer head Mohamed bin Hammam banned for life “after being accused of bribery during his failed attempt to become FIFA president,” according to Reuters.
Though bin Hammam has always denied the allegations, it doesn’t change that FIFA sponsor Emirates Airlines felt “overlooked” during the whole scandal and now is considering leaving when its contract runs out in 2014, Reuters reports.
"We are seriously thinking about not renewing our partnership with FIFA beyond 2014," said Boutros Boutros, the divisional senior vice president of corporate communications for Emirates, told Australia’s B&T Media. The comment took FIFA by surprise, according to Bloomberg.Continue reading...
sports in the spotlight
Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 25, 2011 03:01 PM
When the FIFA World Cup, one of the sporting world’s largest events, went to South Africa last year, it generated $1.1 billion in marketing income for the organizing body, according to Bloomberg.
FIFA will continue to cash in some of those bucks from the world’s largest brewer, Anheuser-Busch InBev, which has signed on to continue its 25-year relationship with the organization through the 2018 World Cup in Russia and the 2022 Cup in Qatar.
For those of you keeping score at home, this means that you’ll get to see commercials proclaiming that Budweiser is the “Official Beer of the FIFA World Cup” for the ninth and tenth time during those events.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on October 24, 2011 10:16 AM
Losing the final of your sport’s biggest global event after nearly winning in overtime is not an easy thing to live through, but getting boatload of cash out of the deal has got to make that bitter pill a little easier to swallow in retrospect.
That’s where Abby Wambach now sits, a few months after the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team lost the World Cup in a penalty-kick shootout after she had scored an overtime goal that was seemingly for the win before Japan somehow equalized. The U.S. was ready to love this team as it had the women of the World Cup-winning 1999. That team has a few members whose names live on: the star Mia Hamm, Brandi Chastain (who famously pulled her own shirt off after scoring the winning goal), the tough vet Michelle Akers, and Julie Foudy, who has helped herself by becoming an analyst on ESPN.
For this summer’s team, the two names that will live on for some time are likely to be Wambach’s and goalie Hope Solo, who seemed to catch the fascination of America during the World Cup run. She broadened her fame by taking a stint on Dancing With the Stars, but hasn’t hooked into the same kind of sponsorship dollars that Wambach has, according to BusinessWeek.Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on August 1, 2011 06:00 PM
U.S. House is expected to pass debt ceiling bill tonight, with the Senate set to vote Tuesday.
Amazon launches AmazonLocal daily deals in Groupon's hometown of Chicago; launches MyHabit app to compete with Gilt Groupe; beefs up streaming offering to compete with Hulu by adding Universal titles; and looks to expand Kindle library.
Apple iPhone 5 now rumored for October; Apple TV lets users buy TV shows with streaming update; and Apple blocks Samsung tablet release in Australia.
Twitter confirms "significant" ($800M?) funding round led by Russia's DST Global; adds Dutch and Indonesian local sites; and opens NYC office.
Adobe bows to Apple and builds Flash alternative.
Airbnb looks to defuse user security concerns by offering $50,000 guarantee to homeowners.
Allstate to shut banking unit, posts $620M in losses on tornado claims.Continue reading...