Thursday
Aug202009

American Airlines Ramps Up Activation With NFL Teams

August 20, 2009: American Airlines has signed a three-year deal with the New England Patriots making the carrier the official airline and an official sponsor of the NFL team. The deal also encompasses the New England Revolution of Major League Soccer and Gillette Stadium, where both teams play their home games. Financial terms were not revealed.

American Airlines said it would activate the alliance through the teams' media properties, including TV and radio programming, out-of-home advertising and in-stadium signage, as well as online assets including Patriots.com and RevolutionSoccer.net. American Airlines marketing is expected to support the Patriots game in London at Wembley Stadium against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Oct. 25 as part of the NFL's International Series.

In addition, American Airlines will fly many of the players who comprise the Patriots' 50th Anniversary Team for a ceremony in their honor at the Patriots' regular season opener against the Buffalo Bills at Gillette Stadium on Sept. 14.

The deal comes on the heels of a sponsorship alliance signed in July between American Airlines and the NFL's St. Louis Rams that includes an American Airlines patch on practice jerseys and other activation. The airline also has a deal as the official airline of the NFL's Dallas Cowboys that runs through 2019, and among other sports-related deals has naming rights at American Airlines Center in Dallas and American Airlines Arena in Miami.

This week, American Airlines also signed a deal with NYC & Company, the marketing, tourism and partnership organization for the City of New York, supported by marketing offering specially discounted airfares between New York and Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth and Miami for flights between Sept. 15 and Dec. 12, 2009 (some dates embargoed around Thanksgiving).

American Airlines will use its relationship with the Revolution to augment its MLS partnership, which the carrier said "has yielded strong results in the U.S. Hispanic market." "We have focused more closely on developing affinity marketing opportunities with major sports and entertainment entities because they offer a great fit with our customers and our network, and both the Patriots and the Revolution can deliver that for American," Charlie Schewe, American's managing director, passenger sales - Northeast Region, said in a statement. "We are also very excited to see the Patriots play this year in London, a city that American serves from Boston Logan Airport with three daily nonstop flights."

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