AmEx Confirms Official NBA Partnership
The National Basketball Association and American Express today confirmed a new marketing partnership that will make the credit card company the official partner of the NBA, USA Basketball, the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA), and the NBA Development League (NBA D-League). Terms of the deal were not released in the announcement.
“We’re proud to be the Official Credit Card Partner of the NBA to provide our Cardmembers with access to tickets and unique experiences with the NBA, USA Basketball, WNBA and NBA D-League to enhance their passion for the game.” This new partnership reunites the NBA and American Express, which had a marketing partnership from 1995 to 2005.
As the Official Credit Card Partner of the NBA, American Express will provide Cardmembers with exclusive experiences and access to regular-season and playoff games, and premier NBA events such as NBA All-Star, the NBA Draft, and NBA Games – London 2011. As an Official Partner of USA Basketball, American Express will also provide packages to USA Basketball games and events staged in the U.S. and internationally.
In addition to serving as the presenting partner of the NBA All-Star Entertainment Series, American Express will also receive inventory across league media platforms, including NBA TV and NBA.com
"From the array of spectacular young talent, to the growing international market, enthusiasm and excitement with the NBA is at an all-time high,” said Courtney Kelso, Vice President, Global Sponsorships Marketing, American Express. “We’re proud to be the Official Credit Card Partner of the NBA to provide our Cardmembers with access to tickets and unique experiences with the NBA, USA Basketball, WNBA and NBA D-League to enhance their passion for the game.”
American Express will continue to provide Cardmembers with special NBA experiences and ticket access through NBA team relationships. The company will establish an expanded presence with NBA teams to complement its existing relationships with the Boston Celtics, Los Angeles Lakers, New York Knicks, and Washington Wizards. Though it was not confirmed in the release, the Bulls and Heat are two teams that AmEx is expected to add to its roster of local NBA deals.
“American Express is a leading global brand and a natural match as an NBA marketing partner,” said Mark Tatum, NBA Executive Vice President, Global Marketing Partnerships. “As an organization focused on delivering an exciting entertainment experience for basketball fans globally, we look forward to again working with American Express to provide its Cardmembers with unique opportunities and experiences around all four of our preeminent basketball properties.”
As part of the partnership, American Express will provide Cardmembers with unique packages for NBA games and events, which will include tickets, access to NBA-themed hospitality events, behind-the-scenes access, and opportunities to meet NBA Legends and players.
Earlier this month, SBJ reported that the deal between AmEx and the NBA was almost called off in September when JPMorgan Chase struck a $150 million deal with Madison Square Garden. According to SBJ, the addition of team rights to the Heat and Bulls helped put the league-level agreement back in play.