Izod, Indy Racing League Put Marketing, Sponsorship Alliance On The Fast Track

November 5, 2009: Phillips-Van Heusen Corp. said it has signed a multi-year, multi-million dollar deal with the Indy Racing League for its Izod brand to become the title sponsor of the newly renamed Izod IndyCar Series beginning in 2010. Length of the deal was put at more than six years.

The deal marks IRL's first title sponsorship since 2001 when Northern Light, an Internet search engine, had naming rights. Izod will also retain its designation as the official apparel partner of the IRL, which began in 2008.

The deal comes at a time when the economy had forced many companies to either pull back or completely cut their sponsorship times with motor racing. Toyota this week said it would pull all its sponsorship from Formula One racing. Over the past two years, General Motors has drastically cut its monetary support of Nascar.

PVH has been aggressive in other sports marketing venues. In 2008, Izod gained naming rights to the former Continental Airlines Arena in New Jersey, home of the NBA's Nets. Last month, PVH unveiled a sponsorship deal with the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

IRL's most prominent race is the Indianapolis 500. Among its top drivers are Danica Patrick, Helio Castroneves, Dario Franchitti, Scott Dixon, Ryan Briscoe and Tony Kanaan, Graham Rahal, Marco Andretti and Tomas Scheckter.

Izod/Indy Collectiion at Macy's from the 2009 IRL season.The 2010 season is scheduled to begin March 14 in Brazil and will feature 17 races in the U.S., Canada, Japan and Brazil. PVH said it plans to unveil a full array of marketing support, including increased and enhanced national media initiatives with IRL’s two TV partners, ESPN on ABC and Versus; print and shared Web initiatives and online promotions; and a sweepstakes providing VIP rewards to the Indy 500 and other selected races. Also available in March 2010 will be an Izod “Winning Series” sportswear collection, inspired by the Indy 500.

Prior to the start of the 2009 season, Izod introduced an Izod/INDY vintage clothing line commemorating the Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s Centennial Era. The collection was launched initially at select Macy’s stores nationwide and was supported by a national ad campaign.

“Our relationship with the Izod brand has been on the fast track since the day we began our partnership in 2008, and we are thrilled they have taken a bigger and more vital role in our sport,” Terry Angstadt, president of the commercial division of the Indy Racing League, said in a statement. “Their strong marketing skills, national retail partnerships and ability to bring fresh eyes to the sport have already proven powerful in our short time together. We’re confident that we have found a partner with a strong brand, a bright future and a vision for growing the Izod IndyCar Series that will benefit fans, drivers, teams, owners and tracks.”

 Football Hall Of Fame, Phillips-Van Heusen Dress Up Partnership

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