Oct 19, 2010 at 02:18 PM
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Kia Re-ups As NBA's Official Auto

In a move first reported by SBJ last month, the NBA and Kia Motors America have extended their marketing partnership, both parties confirmed yesterday.

Returning as the Official Automotive Partner of the NBA, Kia Motors is now also the Official Automotive Partner of NBA All-Star, an Official Automotive Partner of NBA Cares, and the title partner of the Kia NBA All-Star MVP award. Kia will increase its commitment to existing NBA platforms it supported as the presenting partner and become the title partner of Kia NBA Tip-Off and the Kia NBA Performance Awards.

Kia Motors will be prominently featured throughout Kia NBA Tip-Off '10 via media, promotions, and local and national NBA game broadcasts. Kia and the NBA launched a countdown clock on NBA.com and have created a tip-off hashtag (#KiaTipOff10) on Twitter. Kia NBA Tip-Off will be promoted via tagged NBA brand spots, courtside signage and social media integration. Kia will also break a new NBA-themed commercial during Kia NBA Tip-Off '10, which will feature NBA game footage and introduce the all-new 2011 Kia Optima(1), the Official Vehicle of the NBA.

"Over the past three years our relationship with the NBA has significantly raised awareness and consideration for the Kia brand and exposed our exciting lineup of vehicles to basketball fans across the country, and we are pleased to not only return as the Official Automotive Partner of the NBA but to expand our partnership to include new platforms such as NBA All-Star and NBA Cares," said Michael Sprague, vice president, marketing and communications, KMA. "At Kia, we are true fans of the game, and we will continue to provide innovative and engaging programming and activities to help fuel our fellow basketball fans' passion for the sport and the Kia brand."

"As part of our expanded partnership, Kia will be deepening its commitment to the NBA and providing incredible opportunities to bring our fans closer to the game throughout the season," said NBA Executive Vice President of Global Marketing Partnerships Mark Tatum. "In addition to the strong presence that Kia has established on the court with the Kia NBA Performance Awards, the company will help make a huge difference in the lives of many people in the community by becoming a partner of our NBA Cares initiative."

During the automaker's activities around NBA All-Star weekend and NBA Cares, it will serve as an associate partner of an NBA Cares event. Kia will also become the title partner of the Kia NBA All-Star MVP award, which the league presents immediately following the NBA All-Star Game. Also as part of the new agreement, the NBA Performance Awards, which include four of the league's most prestigious year-end honors - Most Valuable Player, Most Improved Player, Sixth Man Award, and Defensive Player of the Year, along with the Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month – will be renamed the "Kia NBA Performance Awards." As part of the Kia NBA Performance Awards, Kia will continue to donate a brand-new vehicle to the charity of the player's choice on behalf of the four season-end award winners.

Kia also sponsors 13 individual NBA teams including the Portland Trailblazers, Cleveland Cavaliers, Boston Celtics, L.A. Clippers, Atlanta Hawks, Miami Heat, New York Knicks, Denver Nuggets, Philadelphia 76ers, Orlando Magic, San Antonio Spurs and Phoenix Suns.

IMG is Kia's AOR for sports sponsorship.