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Sponsorship Empire Such As Roger Federer’s Sparks An Interesting Debate: Do Celebrities Make The Brand Or Do The Brand Make The Celebrities? – Media, Telecoms, IT, Entertainment

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  • With celebrities continuing to pad their bank accounts
    through endorsement deals, some questions remain: What makes them
    an icon? Is it their initial rise to fame or their brand? (See the
    Roger Federer story below)
  • And a follow-up question: Do the celebrities make the
    brands or do the brands make the celebrity, and just how much
    influence do they have? For instance, can Kevin Durant’s new
    partnership with cannabis marketplace Weedmap destigmatize
    marijuana like the Kardashians did for CBD? This could help
    vindicate Sha’Carri Richardson after her Olympic
    dreams were dashed.
  • Speaking of brands, what do Beyoncé, Jay-Z,
    Tiffany & Co. and Basquiat have in common? Well, they share an
    ad and a controversy. The power couple recently unveiled their
    ownership of the late artist’s painting in an ad for Tiffany
    & Co. Social media has been questioning as to how the
    notoriously anti-capitalism Basquiat would weigh in on this
    choice.
  • Finally, “I think we’ll need a bigger boat”
    (or bandwagon that is) as the NFT craze continues adding names like
    Visa, eSports, and the late, great Kobe. But with all the hype, the
    hackers are circling the waters.

Endorsements, Sponsorships & Investments

Roger Federer’s Biggest Legacy? It Might Be
His Billion-Dollar Brand

August 25, 2021 via New York Times – Global Business
(subscription may be required)
He was on his way to becoming one of the few athletes in history to
earn one billion dollars during his playing career, a milestone he
reportedly surpassed this year, joining Tiger Woods, Floyd
Mayweather, LeBron James, Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.
Federer’s two decades of on-court achievements only begin to
account for that stunning total: About $130 million of
Federer’s earnings has come from official prize money, a figure
that puts him second on the all-time list in tennis to
Djokovic’s $152 million. The rest has come through
sponsorships, endorsements, appearance fees at tournaments and
lucrative exhibition events around the world.

$tar Coin’s New Brand Ambassadors: Mark
Thomas, Nick Merico, Nashla Aguilar, MoonTellThat And Tavo
Betancourt

August 24, 2021 via Benzinga
$tar Coin, riding high after its successful launch, is making more
news with the announcement that celebrities Nashla Aguilar, Tavo
Betancourt, MoonTellThat, Nick Merico and Mark Thomas have become
$tar Coin’s Brand Ambassadors. The endorsements from five major
figures in the entertainment industry are sure to excite $tar
Coin’s supporters.

Gonzaga Inks Deal With Giannis-Backed Sports Drink
Brand Ready

August 24, 2021 via Sportico – Business (subscription may be
required)
Perennial college basketball powerhouse Gonzaga University has
selected Giannis Antetokounmpo-backed sports brand Ready Nutrition
as the official sports drink of its athletic department. The
two-time NBA MVP and star of the champion Milwaukee Bucks is an
investor and co-owner of the company, alongside three-time NFL
Defensive Player of the Year.

Celebrity Endorsed Fitness Brand Limbers Up in
Leeds

August 24, 2021 via The Business Desk – Yorkshire
A well-known fitness brand is adding Leeds to its list of locations
with a brand new studio. Barrecore is opening its 13th studio on
Thursday, September 2nd, at the city’s brand-new
Mustard Wharf complex at South Bank. With celebrities including
Claudia Schiffer and Rita Ora as huge fans of the method and
publicly endorsing the technique it proves suitable for everyone
due to its low impact way of working the body.

Beyoncé, Jay-Z Blasted Over Basquiat
Painting in Tiffany & Co. Ad

August 23, 2021 via New York Post
This is a real Basquiat case. New York City’s preeminent power
couple, Beyoncé and Jay-Z, are facing backlash online after
appearing in a new Tiffany & Co. advertising campaign that
features a never-before-seen painting by late NY artist Jean-Michel
Basquiat. Many critics are wondering how the anti-capitalist
Basquiat would feel about having his work featured in a jewelry
ad.

Cal Signs Landmark Sponsorship Deal With Crypto
Exchange: Get Ready for FTX Field at Memorial
Stadium

August 23, 2021 via Mercury News – Business
In its relentless search for new sources of revenue, the Cal
athletic department has gone to a place where cash is neither cold
nor hard. The Bears announced on Monday (August 23) a sponsorship
agreement with FTX, a cryptocurrency exchange regulated in the
United States that will receive naming rights to the field at
Memorial Stadium.  

Kevin Durant Aims to Destigmatize Pot With New
Partnership

August 19, 2021 via ESPN
In a significant step, Brooklyn Nets star Kevin Durant announced a
partnership and sponsorship deal with cannabis marketplace Weedmaps
on August 19, and said he plans to use his platform to destigmatize
marijuana use among athletes. 

Cleared to Earn Money, College Athletes Tap
Creative Sides

August 18, 2021 via Honolulu Star Advisor
The NCAA’s decision to allow athletes to be paid for their fame
and celebrity has led to scores of deals big and small from coast
to coast since July 1. Sponsorships and endorsements are the most
common, but there has been another welcome wrinkle: athletes are
now able to show off their creative, artistic sides and earn some
money while they’re at it.

Film & TV

How the ‘Black Widow’ Battle Could Break
the Mold on Hollywood Dealmaking

August 25, 2021 via Hollywood Reporter
When Scarlett Johansson sued Disney on July 29 over her Black Widow
pay, one community in Hollywood took the development especially
personally: the ranks of transactional attorneys who negotiate
deals for top talent. For many of them, the suit over the
film’s concurrent release in theaters and on Disney+ not only
highlights the complexity of compensation in the streaming era,
it’s also evidence of massive disruption to relationships.

Pac-12 Football Strategy: Timing of Expansion
Decision, Future of Conference Schedule and Goal of ACC-Big Ten
Alliance

August 23, 2021 via Press-Enterprise – News
The Pac-12 is facing a series of momentous strategic and structural
decisions this year as the college sports landscape undergoes
massive transformation. One matter will be resolved before the
others. The conference will decide within weeks whether it wants to
expand – but not which schools it  might add. “We’ll
have a decision in the next couple weeks about whether or not
we’re looking at expansion,” commissioner George
Kliavkoff told the Hotline. “If we do look at expansion, then
it would be a process that we would go through.

Colin Cowherd Network Acquires SEC Podcast as
Super Status Looms

August 24, 2021 via Sportico – Business (subscription may be
required)
Colin Cowherd’s podcast network, The Volume, is diving deeper
into college football with the acquisition of its first daily
program, The Jboy Show, hosted by former South Alabama baseball
player-turned-college football coach Jake Crane. Since launching a
year ago, the SEC-focused podcast has amassed 2 million
downloads.

Music Biz

Concerts Have Been Pummelled by the Pandemic.
These Should Be the Live Music Industry’s Golden Rules for the
Next Year

August 25, 2021 via Music Business Worldwide
Live music has been bruised the hardest during recurring lockdowns,
but the tentative first steps back are being taken. Venues,
artists, crew, suppliers and the rest suffered enormously during
the pandemic and so we should go to more shows than ever to help
propel this part of the business to new heights.

Mindset, an Artist-Driven Mental Wellness Audio
Platform, Raises a $8.7 Million From Scooter Braun and
Others

August 25, 2021 via Techcrunch
Mindset, a platform featuring personal story collections from
recording artists, announced on August 25 that it raised $8.7
million in seed funding. As co-founders of the K-pop focused
podcast production company DIVE Studios, brothers Brian Nam, Eric
Nam and Eddie Nam noticed that the studio’s best performing
content came from podcast episodes.

Aerosmith Inks Deal to Bring Entire Catalog to
Universal Music Group

August 23, 2021 via Music Business Worldwide
This past week, it was Madonna and Warner Music Group. This time,
it’s Aerosmith and Universal Music Group, jointly unveiling a
new deal inked just ahead of the band’s
50th anniversary.

Applebee’s Puts Smooth Marketing Moves on
‘Fancy Like’ Song

August 23, 2021 via Nation’s Restaurant News
Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill + Bar is bringing back the Oreo
Cookie Shake as country singer Walker Hayes’ “Fancy
Like” hit, with lyrics that feature the treat as well as the
brand’s Bourbon Street Steak, continues to dominate the record
charts.

Method Man Launches Tical WorldT- the First
Crypto- & Community-Owned Comic Universe

August 21, 2021 via Metro Atlanta Black
Method Man is a multi-talented personality, having transitioned his
multi-platinum, award-winning success in the music industry into
the film industry, with an award-winning career in acting and
producing; as an NAACP Award-winning actor in Power: Book II and
executive producing “Wu-tang: An American Saga,” now
entering its second season on Hulu. Now, the self-proclaimed
“comic book geek,” and host of the Marvel/Method podcast,
is following in the footsteps of Stan Lee by launching his own
comic universe, Tical WorldT, featuring original characters that
will evolve into storylines for interactive comic books, TV shows,
feature films, and video games.

Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs)

2CrazyNFT, a Tripod of Crypto, eSports and
NFTs

August 23, 2021 via MarketWatch – All Company Press Releases
News & Commentary
Merging the emerging technology of non-fungible tokens and the
multibillion-dollar online gaming industry otherwise known as
eSports is a crazy but innovative idea. A major highlight of the
idea is that it is bound to attract more utility to NFTs, which
have gained wide social acceptance, both in the crypto and creators
communities. 2CrazyNFT is trailing this novel path with its NFT cum
eSports platform positioned to provide more fun and experience for
online game enthusiasts and players.

Visa Buys a Mohawked CryptoPunk NFT for $165,000:
All You Need to Know

August 24, 2021 via NDTV – Technology
Visa is the latest major firm to join the burgeoning NFT craze. It
has announced that it bought a CryptoPunk, one of thousands of
NFT-based digital avatars, for nearly $165,000. 

Soon NFTs Will Enable In-Game Item Ownership in
the Metaverse

August 24, 2021 via Yahoo Finance – Top Stories
Cryptocurrencies and the gaming industry merge around NFTs. This is
because NFTs represent a form of provable, digital ownership. An
NFT can be linked to art, such as digital music, movies, or it
could be tied to real-world property, such as real estate.

A Trove of Unseen Kobe Bryant Photos Will Be
Auctioned as NFTS, With All Proceeds Going to His Youth Sports
Foundation

August 24, 2021 via Business Insider- Silicon Alley Insider
News
A collection of never-before-seen photos of the legendary Kobe
Bryant is being launched as NFTs. The collection, entitled
“Kobe,” consists of eight black and white photos of the
basketball player photographed in 1999. All proceeds will benefit
the Mamba & Mambacita Sports Foundation.

This Time It’s Different: When Defi Meets
NFTS

August 23, 2021 via CryptoPost
With decentralized finance and NFTs seeing a meteoric rise,
it’s easy to believe crypto apps are finally breaking through.
But is there actually real user growth, or is it just the same
influencers moving from one hyped market to the next?

$500,000 for a Picture of a Rock NFT Says Where
the Cycle Is

August 24, 2021 via Washington Post – Business News
NFTs are an innovation that might be even more important than the
cryptocurrencies they are based on. But not like this.

NBA Top Shot Adds WNBA Moments Amid NFT
Rebound

August 25, 2021 via Sportico – Business (subscription may be
required)
Even before Dapper Labs executives launched NBA Top Shot, they knew
to expect volatility. Such is life in the early days of blockchain
technology. Through the ups and downs, Dapper Labs head of
partnerships Caty Tedman said in an interview on August 24 that her
hope is that, “every time there’s a spike, there’s
something new for people to do. so that there’s a reason to
stick around.” 

NFTs Are Here to Stay, Dominate and
Slay

August 25, 2021 via Crunchbase – News
Everything blockchain comes in waves and cycles, and the NFT craze
is absolutely no exception. The hype wave of the first half of 2021
as many celebrities raced to cash in on the mania ultimately
fizzled out. Still, the NFT obituaries that started circulating the
crypto press were premature.

Hackers Impersonate OpenSea Employees in an
Attempt to Steal Cryptocurrency Assets and NFTs

August 25, 2021 via IT Security News
Recently, it has been found that an aggressive phishing attack in
progress on the crypto gods platform OpeaSea is targeting its
clients in order to steal NFTs and cryptocurrency.

Right of Publicity

Atlanta Braves Become First MLB Team to Sign NIL
Deals With Student-Athletes

August 23, 2021 via WRDW
The Atlanta Braves announced on August 23 the signing of NIL
contracts with two local student-athletes, University of Georgia
gymnast Rachel Baumann and Georgia Tech quarterback Jordan Yates.
With this signing, the Braves become the first Major League
Baseball team to officially partner with student-athletes since the
NCAA and state regulations were passed last month.

After Losing MLB License, Topps Should Pivot to
College Sports Trading Cards

August 23, 2021 via Forbes – Business (subscription may be
required)
Founded as a chewing gum company in 1938, Topps has been synonymous
with baseball trading cards since the 1950s. As recently as last
month, Topps was planning to go public with an exciting $1.3
billion SPAC merger with Mudrick Capital. However, last week, both
Major League Baseball and the MLBPA declined to extend their
licensing deals with Topps, thus placing the company’s
long-term future in peril.

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