Dentsu Creates Sports America Unit To Expand Reach

Kiyoshi Nakamura Dentsu inc. Japanese ad giant Dentsu's U.S. arm is opening a dedicated sports marketing unit as it grows its business in an arena where it has had success internationally.

Tabbed Dentsu Sports America, the group will offer the sprawling services that the well-established IMG has put forth, including broadcast-rights management, athlete representation and sponsorship sales. The company says one of its early duties will be to seek sponsors for world track and field, and swimming championships.

Dentsu says it is one of the five leading sports-marketing operations on a global scale, due to its footprint in Asia and Europe. Kiyoshi Nakamura will serve as president of the U.S. group; he has been a director of Dentsu's sports business division and will continue to be based in Japan.

Akihiro Nishiyama will serve as COO of Dentsu Sports America. He has been with Dentsu's PR unit in America, which has handled U.S. sports marketing for the company until now. Dentsu says it has worked with Major League Baseball and the organizers of the U.S. Open tennis tournament and soccer's World Cup.

Sports marketing clients of Dentsu's internationally include General Electric, Toyota and Canon.

Tim Andree, the CEO of Dentsu Holdings USA, says adding sports marketing to "the suite of services we offer" is "a tremendous business proposition."

Dentsu's sports marketing work dates back to the 1960s, the company says, and includes representing the organizing committee of the 1984 Summer Olympics in the Japanese market.

Tags: agency, sports
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