The Columbus Crew have announced a five year partnership with Barbasol to serve as the team’s jersey sponsor starting in 2012. Two years after Glidden departed front of the Columbus kit, the team managed to secure a long term partnership with a venerable American company with a long history of involvement with the sports world. As is typical with these types of deals, the arrangement includes print, television and stadium advertisements. In addition, cans of Barbasol will be marketed around central Ohio with the Crew logo.
On the business side, the deal makes great sense for both sides. Shaving cream is an affordable product used and bought by the majority of MLS supporters. We have long reported on the loyalty of Major League Soccer fans to brands affiliated with the league and that loyalty will likely be rewarded when soccer fans go to the store to purchase their shaving cream.
The deal is officially between Perio, Inc., the maker of Barbasol. Perio, Inc. was formed as Columbus Dental in 1903 and joined forces with Barbasol in 20o1. Perio is also involved in the sponsorship of golfers and has a long history of team, player and league sponsorship. The Crew become the 15th team in the league with a sponsorship.
The amount of deal is not yet available, other than a statement that it is worth “multi-millions”. For reference, the recent Fire deal with Quaker (also an iconic brand), is a reported $8million over 3 years. Here is a quote from John Wagner of Hunt Sports Group courtesy of the MLSSoccer.com story. “It’s a great day for the organization, one of those milestone days a team has in its history because of the length of the commitment, the quality of the company and local proximity,” Wagner said, ticking off the three boxes teams crave when searching for a kit sponsor. “The fans now have a sponsor they can rally behind.”