By Todd Ceisner
Several of FLW’s major and most visible sponsors won’t subsidize team deals for anglers in 2015, BassFan has learned, leaving several of the sport’s biggest names in search of title sponsorship for next season.
Multiple sources with direct knowledge of the situation, including several anglers who stand to be affected, say that Kellogg’s, Castrol, Straight Talk Wireless and Mars Chocolate, all of which have been multi-year sponsors of FLW and have supported multi-angler teams in the past, will not return at the same level of sponsorship they have been at previously. Some will part ways completely with FLW.
What’s more is there is speculation that Chevy may also be planning to significantly scale back its involvement with FLW, a stunning development in light of the automaker’s ties to FLW since the tournament organization’s inception in 1996.
“Yes, there will be changes. Categories will be replaced by competitors,” Trisha Blake, FLW’s president of marketing, told BassFan on Thursday.
Blake declined to comment specifically about the contract status of the companies in question.
“We’re a sport like anything else and sponsors come and go,” Blake said in a phone interview. “This happens every year and obviously there are multi-year (contracts) that we run off of. We’re into the renewal and new business timeframe right now so there are a lot of things that are going to be announced.
“Our partners are out to drive sales and build their brand and when the economy is the way it is, some of their businesses aren’t as healthy as they were before so they have to look at cost reductions. … There’s a lot that’s being worked on right now.”
Blake noted that Walmart’s affiliation with FLW remains secure and will not be affected by other sponsors coming or going.