Chief Sponsor Nike Agrees to New Marketing Partnership Playing On “Athlete-of- the-Decade’s” Bedroom Exploits
31 December 2009
By Staff Writer, MarketMatch
CHICAGO (MarketMatch) – While US corporate giants AT&T and Accenture have scratched their lucrative sponsorships of golf superstar Tiger Woods, the “long-iron man” of the boudoir, is making a comeback of sorts.
On Thursday, Church & Dwight Co., Inc. (NYSE: CHD), manufacturer of Trojan Enz condoms, announced it would begin selling Woods-branded Big Head/Little Head covers for drivers, 3-woods, 5-woods and hybrids.
“They’re made of the softest yet most durable latex available,” said Trojan Enz spokesman Andrew Squibley. “While your club heads remain protected, you wouldn’t even know the covers were on. We think it’s quite a breakthrough in golf engineering.”
Squibley said that for authenticity – which Woods demanded – the head covers had to maintain their distinctive “reservoir end.” Added Squibley: “No fucking idea why. But that’s how he wants them to look.”
Big Head/Little Head, “which needs no explanation,” according to Squibley, will have its “coming out” party at the annual PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando Jan 28 – 30.
AT&T last week became the latest company to cut ties with Woods, joining a parade of sponsors that have dumped or down-scaled their relationships with the philandering golf champ since news of his multiple extramarital affairs broke last month.
Several women, including strippers, casino hostesses and regular barflies, have stepped forward and claimed having had affairs with Woods, No. 1 in golf’s world rankings for 10 years. These unexpected admissions emerged in the days following an early-morning car accident and reported altercation with his wife, Elin, at his Florida home late last month.
“It was a married guy’s worst nightmare,” a Woods friend told MarketMatch. “She looked at his text messages. The rest is history. How could he be such a dumbass?”
In December, Woods announced that he would take an “indefinite break” from professional golf, asking for time and privacy as he deals with his personal problems.
Woods’s chief sponsor Nike (NYSE: NKE), the sports equipment and apparel company, told MarketMatch it thought the Trojan Enz endorsement was a natural complement to their brand message: “Do It.” Or, in Woods’s case, Squibley said, “Do it – over and over.”
How will Woods’s rebound and new marketing deal be seen by the public or on the Street? This may be a clue: Following disclosure of the Woods sponsorship, overnight trading in stock of Trojan Enz parent company Church & Dwight Co. was up stiffly, hitting record levels.
“All I can say is, if it stays up like that more than four hours, consult your financial adviser,” Squibley quipped.