Industry Shorts: NBA, La Liga, adidas, Unilever

20 Jun 2019

By: Sport Industry Group

The NBA, together with the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) and gaming supplier Highlight Games Limited, has launched an exclusive virtual sports betting game that will utilise actual NBA highlights and footage.

‘NBA Last 90’ will debut in US and European gaming and lottery markets during the 2019/20 NBA season. The game will feature an archive of NBA highlights and footage from recent seasons and will offer players a unique virtual sports gaming experience.

Players will be able to bet on various outcomes, including the winning team, who will score the first possession and the total number of points scored by both teams during the last 90 seconds of a simulated match-up between two NBA teams.

adidas has lost in a bid to extend trademark protection for its three-stripes symbol in the European Union.

A court has ruled that the logo is not distinctive enough. In 2014, adidas was granted a trademark for "three parallel equidistant stripes of identical width" but two years later Belgium-based Shoe Branding Europe applied for the trademark to be annulled.

A court has now upheld the annulment decision, dismissing the action brought by adidas against the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) decision.

A content block has been activated in Ecuador for the violation of La Liga intellectual property rights at the request of the governing body of the top two divisions of Spanish football.

SENADI (the National Service for Intellectual Rights) has ordered the blocking of five different websites with names stemming from the ‘Rojadirecta’ platform, which has previously provided illegal streams of La Liga matches.

From now on, any user who navigates to the five websites will be automatically redirected to a website providing information on the block applied to the sites.

Unilever Chief Executive Alan Jope has called on brands to “walk the talk” with regards to the increase in purpose-led marketing. Jope said: “Purpose-led brand communications is not just a matter of ‘make them cry, make them buy’. It’s about action in the world.”

Unilever’s Chief Sustainability Officer, Rebecca Marmott, will be discussing how purpose is good for business and how brands should approach it on a panel at next week’s Beyond Sport UK Forum, being held at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Tuesday 25th June. Marmott will be joined on the panel by senior figures from SAP and Bloomberg as part the day-long event exploring sport’s role in addressing social issues and driving shared value.

Beyond Sport UK, in partnership with Sport England, will take a fresh look at sport as a driver for both social good and business success. It will explore how unique and unexpected partnerships, across the public, third and corporate sector are creating lasting change and determine how we can do more together. More information can be found here.