The Warriors are the latest NBA team to reach an agreement with a sponsor for jersey advertisements, and the terms of that deal are eye-popping. As Darren Rovell of ESPN details, the Warriors’ jersey three-year sponsorship agreement with Japanese tech company Rakuten is worth $20MM annually, which nearly doubles the second-most valuable deal signed so far — the Cavaliers’ agreement with Goodyear is said to be worth about $12MM per year.
“We actually had multiple finalists,” Warriors chief marketing officer Chip Bowers said, per Rovell. “This was not the biggest deal that we were offered. … We saw an opportunity, given the visibility we were receiving. So we felt in order to grow our global vision, we had to be aligned with a global brand.”
The Warriors can’t put that $60MM commitment from Rakuten – which owns cash-back site Ebates, messaging app Viber, and e-book brand Kobo – directly toward team salary. However, as Mark Medina of The Bay Area News Group writes, a deal of that magnitude can indirectly help the franchise build its roster.
Here’s more from out of the Bay Area:
- After Kevin Durant said on Bill Simmons’ podcast last month that “nobody wants to play in Under Armours,” Stephen Curry – Under Armour’s top endorser – had a conversation with his teammate to clear the air. “This is nothing that is going to put a wrench in the locker room,” Curry told Scott Fowler of The Charlotte Observer.
- Having just signed a new five-year deal with the Warriors, Curry will be under contract through age 34, and he says that he hopes to play for a few more years beyond that. As Fowler details in the Observer piece linked above, Curry’s goal is to at least match the 16 years that his father Dell Curry spent in the NBA. So far, the eight-year veteran is halfway to that point — the 2024/25 season would be his 16th.
- Within his latest mailbag, Anthony Slater of The Athletic addresses that “brand battle” between Curry and Durant, while also discussing Andre Iguodala‘s Hall-of-Fame chances, the Warriors’ biggest weakness, and much more.