Sports Illustrated unveiled a licensing agreement between SI Swimsuit, Nomadic Entertainment Group and Revelry Eleven to create a “one-of-a-kind elevated experience for consumers to engage with SI Swimsuit: SI Swimsuit Island.” The SI Swimsuit Island festival will take place on Miami Beach from Feb. 16-18 and serve as a two-night, two-day experience that will include musical acts, a high-end culinary offering, exclusive fan activations, panels and appearances by SI Swimsuit models and celebrity guests. In addition, SI Swimsuit Island will kick off with “Good Vibes,” a charitable experience that will benefit hurricane relief for the Caribbean islands devastated this past season
Two veterans are reportedly making a return to the Super Bowl this year, Ad Age reports that Mars candy brand M&M will come back to the broadcast after a three-year hiatus with a 30-second TV spot, created by BBDO New York, that will air during the first quarter of the game. Meanwhile, Adweek writes that Doritos will run a commercial created by Goodby, Silverstein & Partners after sitting out last year’s game.
NASCAR and Whelen Engineering inked a multi-year extension to continue its entitlement sponsorship of the NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour and the NASCAR Whelen Euro Series through 2024. Whelen will also extend its designation as the “Official Warning Lights of NASCAR.” “More than a decade of successful partnership has resulted in Whelen Engineering being deeply connected to many levels of our sport,” said Jim Cassidy, NASCAR senior vice president of racing operations. “The NASCAR Whelen Modified Tour and NASCAR Whelen Euro Series are critical to reaching fans, developing talent and delivering great racing both domestically and abroad.”
Kids Foot Locker is teaming up with Isaiah Thomas, Jimmy Butler and D’Angelo Russell for a campaign “to help show new-to-town young fans around their respective cities.” The holiday push saw the release of the first video featuring Cleveland’s new point guard, Isaiah Thomas, showing 12 year-old London Arrington around their new hometown of Cleveland. Kids Foot Locker will release additional digital spots as a part of the content series beginning on Dec. 14, featuring Jimmy Butler exploring Minneapolis, and then on Dec. 21, with the third and final spot featuring D’Angelo Russell in his new hometown of Brooklyn, N.Y.
The PGA Tour locked in a a deal to partner with Chinese firm Shankai Sports to manage the operations of its China series for 20 years. After a one-year hiatus, the PGA Tour China Series will resume next year.
ESPN is touting results from its first seven weeks of Nielsen Total Live Audience data, stating that streaming and out-of-home viewing are pushing audience numbers among Millennials (Persons 18-34). The company saw a 23% rise in that demo in Total Day and a 28% in Prime Time over ESPN’s traditional viewership. As a result, ESPN saw 4% and 13% year-over-year growth in Total Day and Prime Time viewing overall, respectively, among Millennials during that time period. “These early findings from Nielsen tell us that Total Live Audience is the only meaningful way to understand sports consumption, including key insights into our Millennial viewers,” said Cary Meyers, SVP of Fan and Media Intelligence, ESPN. “We will continue to mine this data to not only inform us on how best to serve fans with our content, but also to guide advertisers on how best to optimize their brand on our platform with specific audiences.”
The National Lacrosse League serves up its 32nd season today, reporting that the NLL’s digital-first approach last year saw its Twitter Game of the Week average 344,000 viewers in its inaugural season, while tts own OTT, NLL TV channel boasts 25,000 subscribers. Meanwhile, NLL’s revenues grew by an impressive 11% last year. Key in that growth was the emergence of NLL TV, new league-wide sponsorships and increased ticket sales.
Razer is teaming up with Super Evil Megacorp for a mobile esports partnership in a deal that includes serving as title sponsor of the Vainglory World Championship. Super Evil Megacorp, creators of Vainglory, stated that the strategic partnership with Razer is designed to further advance mobile esports beginning with a Vainglory competitive event at the Microsoft Store in New York City
The first-ever Collegiate Rocket League – National Championship revs up this weekend, with eight contenders in the mix to claim the crown include: Ohio State, UNCC 1 (University of North Carolina Charlotte), Northeastern Red (Northeastern University), Mustangs (California Polytechnic University), Cal Poly Pomona, UMD (University of Maryland College Park), UNT Eagles (University of North Texas) and Gryphons (University of Guelph-Humber). Play begins Saturday at 9a PT at twitch.tv/rlesports.
Meanwhile, more international sports teams continue to pick up esports squads. Bayer Leverkusen, from the Bundesliga, is adding FIFA pro Marvin ‘M4RV’ Hintz to its roster. Jochen A. Rotthaus, Director of Marketing and Communication at Bayer 04 stated that “With his skill and passion Marvin Hintz will be an excellent ambassador for us. Above all, he will make a major contribution to establishing the megatrend in our club. We are convinced of that.”
Meanwhile, Australian Football League club Essendon nabbed the rights to esports team Abyss, who will now reportedly rebrand under Essendon’s name and logo while relocating to Melbourne.
Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment named Elizabeth Brooks as Chief Marketing Officer to oversee all of the marketing efforts for BSE’s teams and venues, including branding, advertising, merchandising, creative, digital and in-game presentation. She joins u from Sopris Capital Associates, where she served as CMO and Executive in Residence for the private equity firm.
Toronto FC/Seattle Sounders for the MLS Cup on ESPN and Univision on Saturday at 4p.