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MLS, national teams get tequila sponsor

In a four-year deal, El Jimador tequila will sponsor Major League Soccer, the U.S. men's and women's national teams, and the annual U.S. tour of the Mexico's national team. The agreement provides El Jimador with an onsite promotional presence at games, on-field advertising signs for more than 100 televised games each year, player appearances at promotional events and a line of co-branded merchandise.

The agreement was signed with New York-based Soccer United Marketing, the commercial arm of MLS, which also represents the U.S. Soccer Federation and the commercial rights to the U.S. tour of the Mexican national team.

"2010 was an incredible year for our sport, particularly with the excitement generated among fans by the World Cup," said David Wright, SUM's vice president of global sponsorship. "We think we're starting to see a watershed swell of interest around our sport." Wright added that part of soccer's attraction in the U.S. for sponsors is the strong following the sport has among Hispanics, the nation's fastest-growing ethnic category in the U.S.

The deal is the latest in a series of major sponsor agreements struck by SUM. In February it signed up Allstate Corp., to sponsor MLS and the U.S. men's and women's national teams, while in March, Anheuser-Busch Inbev N.V. renewed its deal. Sports Business Journal reported that PepsiCo Inc. had also renewed its agreement with SUM.

Read the whole story at The Wall Street Journal »

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