November 25, 2014 5:24 am JST
World Cup sponsor no more

Sony won't renew FIFA contract

TOKYO -- Sony does not intend to renew a sponsorship contract with FIFA, preferring to spend its money on completing structural reforms this fiscal year.

     Back in 2005, the Japanese electronics giant became an official sponsor of the soccer organization, the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, and the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. The 33 billion yen ($277 million at current rates), eight-year contract expires this year. Sony engaged in sales and marketing worldwide for more than 40 tournaments.

     The company considered renewing the contract but abandoned the idea on the grounds that sponsorship costs could rise. It is booking a large impairment loss on the smartphone business and is forgoing dividends for the first time since listing.

     FIFA has sponsors from six major fields. Sony was the sponsor from the digital life field, encompassing electronics and entertainment. South Korea's Samsung Electronics is rumored as a possible successor.

(Nikkei)

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