Anthony Davis Will Tip Off With H&R Block This Tax Season

H&R Block, the world’s largest consumer tax services provider, announced earlier this week that two-time NBA All-Star Anthony Davis will serve as a brand ambassador for its upcoming tax season.


H&R Block is the NBA’s tax services partner and will feature Davis alongside the brand’s bow-tie wearing tax pro Richard Gartland in its 2016 advertising.  Davis will make a cameo in commercials beginning mid-January, and then will star in spots set to air in February. This partnership marks the first time the brand has used a sports personality in a national campaign.


“We’re excited to partner with a dominant player like Anthony for Refund Season,” said Kathy Collins, H&R Block’s chief marketing officer. “We’re so impressed with his determination and commitment to the community. Anthony has a lot of qualities our clients can relate to – even if his first job out of college has far more complex tax implications than most of ours.”


In addition to advertising, H&R Block will leverage Davis for personal appearances throughout the season and partner with his charity, AD’s Flight Academy, for outreach and events in the local New Orleans community.


“Being part of a strong team is very important to me and H&R Block is the best team to have your back during tax time,” said Davis.


Davis and Gartland shot the series of advertisements earlier this month in New Orleans.


According to the Sports Business Journal, H&R Block’s deal with the NBA is the company’s first professional sports league sponsorship.


About H&R Block

H&R Block, Inc. (NYSE: HRB) is the world’s largest consumer tax services provider. More than 680 million tax returns have been prepared worldwide by and through H&R Block since 1955. In fiscal 2015, H&R Block had annual revenues of nearly $3.1 billion with 24.2 million tax returns prepared worldwide. Tax return preparation services are provided by professional tax preparers in approximately 12,000 company-owned and franchise retail tax offices worldwide, and through H&R Block tax software products. H&R Block also offers adjacent Tax Plus products and services. For more information, visit the H&R Block Newsroom at

Read More

-Users-joshua.duboff-Desktop-Screnshots- 2015-12-18 at 8.55.14 AM

Athlete-CEOs Turning To Crowdfunding for New Sponsorship and Revenue Opportunities

logoFrenchToday’s guest post is by Loic Yviquel. Lois is the Founder and CEO of, a crowdfunding site dedicated to sports projects.


We’re in an era where athletes and entertainers are more than just performers. Jay Z famously said, “I’m not a businessman, I’m a business, man.” Indeed, he, his wife Beyonce, the Kardashians… they have transcended celebrity to become something more. Similarly, athletes such as LeBron James or Peyton Manning, great players who are almost as well known away from sporting competition, have a different perspective on their careers. They are managing their brands and operate more like CEOs than mere players of basketball or football.


But of course LeBron and Peyton are the exception to the rules. Most athletes don’t command vast financial empires or operate multi-media brand extensions. But there are in fact many athletes, perhaps the majority of top tier athletes, who are a new breed of Athlete-CEO. For every Major League Baseball or NBA player with a guaranteed contract, there are hundreds of professional golfers, surfers, tennis players or extreme sports athletes who rise to the top level in their fields and must deal with the often astonishing costs associated with achieving, or even striving for, success.


Professional Beach Volleyball players Trevor and Taylor Crabb are a perfect example. A relatively new team on the AVP tour, the Crabb brothers have quickly made a name for themselves with some impressive wins. Playing volleyball on the beach sounds like a dream come true for most people, but the reality can be quite different. Travel, tournament entry fees, training, preventative and rehabilitation healthcare costs are just some of the financial issues the brothers have to deal with. All this requires many of today’s professional athlete to be not just masters of their sports, but have advanced economic degrees as well.


Many athletes, including the Crabb brothers, as well as Olympic gold medallist Kaitlyn Farrington and 2016 Rio Olympic hopefuls Sydney Bolger and Carly Shevitz, are exploring the idea of crowdfunding to help them reach their sporting goals.  I created so that athletes of all abilities can take a degree of control over their financial situation, rather than be completely beholden to the whims of traditional sponsors, and at the same time tap into their loyal fan base. crowdfunding projects let athletes and fans develop a more authentic and relevant connection while generating needed funds for the modern Athlete-CEO.


Athletes leveraging crowdfunding is another example of how the modern athlete is “owning their narrative” in ways previously unattainable. Social media allows them to connect directly with fans or broadcast news without the ‘filter’ of traditional media. Technology has not only reduced the distance between athletes and fans, it has changed the nature of the relationship. Crowdfunding makes the athlete and fan closer to partners with a shared goal.


Crowdfunding isn’t going to do away with more traditional sports sponsorship. Nike and adidas will still pay for the privilege of having members of the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team wear their cleats, but for the growing population of Athlete-CEOs, crowdfunding offers a compelling new alternative.

Read More

Hyundai Signs Four-Year Deal With the NFL, Replaces GM as Become Official Automotive Sponsor

Hyundai NFL 562x325
In its latest sports marketing venture, Hyundai is now an official automotive sponsor of the National Football League. The NFL has the largest and most avid fan base among U.S. sports, and Hyundai will soon connect this passion with the enthusiasm Hyundai owners have for their vehicles.

“We are huge football fans at Hyundai and feel there is no better venue to reach consumers, increase consideration and tell the Hyundai brand story,” said Dave Zuchowski, president and CEO, Hyundai Motor America. “We can’t wait to show the NFL’s 188 million fans the great design, advanced technologies, dynamic performance and numerous safety features within the Hyundai lineup. The NFL and Hyundai also share a commitment to helping the communities where we do business, another important aspect of our sponsorship.”

Hyundai NFL 300x293 As part of the new sponsorship, Hyundai will have use of NFL trademarks across various marketing channels, including branded content, advertising and promotional materials. The NFL has become a year-round sport and Hyundai will have access to some of the biggest events on the calendar, such as the Super Bowl, NFL Combine, NFL Draft, NFL Kickoff and NFL Playoffs. Hyundai will also provide promotional vehicles at the Super Bowl and other events throughout the year.

“We are pleased to welcome Hyundai to our family of sponsors,” said Renie Anderson, the NFL’s senior vice president of sponsorship. “We appreciate Hyundai’s enthusiasm as we work together to reach our fans with innovative programs during our season and with our major calendar events throughout the year.”

As NFL fans everywhere celebrate the start of the new season, Hyundai will launch its activation with a major presence during NFL Kickoff activities on Sept. 10.

Read More


Sponsors Line Up For 50th Head Of The Charles Regatta

A staple on the New England calendar, the Head of the Charles Regatta (HOCR) will celebrate its 50th rowing this fall.  The 2014 event is scheduled for the weekend of October 18 & 19 and features new sponsor Victorinox Swiss Army.

Victorinox VSA_Logo“We are delighted to welcome Victorinox Swiss Army into the Head Of The Charles family, especially in our milestone year,” said HOCR Executive Director Fred Schoch.  “The Regatta is a cherished Boston tradition, and our partnership with a storied brand such as Victorinox will only enhance the historic nature of this event.”

The world’s largest and most prestigious regatta was established in 1965 and continues to bring the best crew teams to Boston’s Charles River for the ultimate two-day rowing competition along the three-mile course.  With the race’s bi-centennial expected to attract 11,000 world-class rowing competitors and over 400,000 spectators, Victorinox will use this opportunity to bring awareness to its enhanced collection.  The plan: create pop-up retail shops at the HOCR Rowing & Fitness Expo, with special offers on personalized Swiss Army knives, wrist watches, luggage and fragrances.  The company, known primarily for its iconic pocket knives and cutlery, looks to change its image as it has been named the “official timepiece and travel gear sponsor.”  This comes at an opportune time as Victorinox Swiss Army celebrates its own 130th anniversary.

The presenting sponsor of this year’s Head of the Charles Regatta is BNY Mellon.  Other current sponsors on the line-up include data storage giant EMC Corp., and luxury brands Brooks Brothers, Land Rover, New Balance, and Sperry Topsider.

Planned commemorative events include a 50th Anniversary Gala Dinner, a documentary showcase, and a historical exhibit.  The Regatta will run on both Saturday and Sunday from 8AM – 5PM, and admission is free.

To learn more about the Head of the Charles and the full event line-up, check out the official website and follow HOCR on Twitter and Facebook.



Read More

Reese’s Bites Into March With Fan Edition Peanut Butter Cups

via Reesse's Facebook Page
via Reese’s Facebook Page

In honor of March Madness, Reese’s created edible college basketball themed designs on their peanut butter cups. The Fan Edition Printed Cups, a new line of peanut butter cups with basketball designs printed on them.

“We are very excited to introduce this new printing technology for Reese’s college basketball fans, just in time for NCAA March Madness*,” said John Maitrejean, senior manager, Reese’s brand. “The basketball-related designs complement our role as the official candy partner of the NCAA and title sponsor of the Reese’s College All-Star Game. This is new and exciting territory for us and one that holds a lot of promise for our fans.”

There are 10 cup designs with imagery including jerseys, basketballs brackets and basketball terminology such as, “Double Team,” “Nothing But Net” and “Dual Threat.” The Fan Edition packaging will also feature the NCAA logo as well as a basketball player silhouette. (more)

Hershey’s is the official candy partner of the NCAA and the title sponsor of the National Association of Basketball Coaches’ Reese’s College All-Star Game. The company uses the Reese’s brand for both sponsorships.

These edible designs will go great with college-themed Jell-O, some Keurig college coffee, and a dozen College Rose Collection flowers. It’s a licensor’s dream come true.

Read More