The NBA may be a sporting institution, but it’s also a serious cash cow. Each of the teams in the association has an average valuation of around $1.9 billion apiece, whilst the NBA as a whole generated over $8 billion last year.
Much of this revenue comes in the form of sponsorship deals. More than 1 billion people around the world tune into NBA games each year, making them some of the most lucrative advertising events around. Whether its stadium naming rights, jersey patches, or player endorsements, brands spend billions on NBA sponsorship deals as a means of amplifying their message. These are the biggest and best NBA sponsorship deals in recent history.
Michael Jordan & Nike
Sneaker sponsorships have long been the most lucrative realm of NBA sponsorships, and former Chicago Bulls superstar Michael Jordan holds the top spot. His iconic range of Jordan Sneakers, produced in collaboration with the sportswear giant Nike, netted him close to $100 million last year, far outstripping any other sneaker deals in history.
The fact that people of all ages still line up around the block to cop the latest pair of Jordans is a testament to the star power that NBA legends can give to brands.
Los Angeles Clippers & Bumble
Jersey patch sponsorships used to be relatively small fry in the world of NBA branding, but that is starting to change. Major brands such as GE, AT&T, and FedEx have been signing 8-figure deals to have their logo appear on the jerseys of the biggest teams.
However, none of these collaborations come close to the three-year deal agreed between the Los Angeles Clippers and the popular dating app Bumble last year, estimated to be worth more than $20 million. Bumble has stated that the aim of the partnership is to promote female empowerment, with all players signing up to their #StrongerWithHer campaign in the process.
NBA & MGM
It may come as a surprise that the NBA and the gambling industry are only just starting to forge partnerships now, given the significant amount of overlap between their respective audiences. A potentially game-changing sponsorship was recently agreed between Las Vegas casino resort titan MGM and the NBA to provide sportsbook services, estimated to be worth at least $25 million, potentially paving the way for similar partnerships in the future.
While MGM does not offer online casino games, the potential for popular iGaming platforms to partner up with the NBA in the future is high. Sites such as Wingz offer a host of basketball and sports-themed slots, with NBA fans being able to take advantage of free spins and offers through bonus sites. You can visit to see more here, if you’re wondering why the gambling sector and the NBA make such logical partners.
Atlanta Hawks & State Farm
The US insurance giant State Farm has been making major strides into the world of sports sponsorships recently, and the NBA is no exception. They recently signed a deal with the Atlanta Hawks to secure 20-year naming rights to their home stadium, formerly named the Philips Stadium. The deal, which will change the name of this iconic venue to State Farm Arena, is estimated to be worth a whopping $193 million, a sum that significantly raises the bar for other would-be stadium sponsors.
These high-profile sponsorships from the past year show that the NBA is following in the steps of the NFL to become a serious big-money advertiser. The upcoming season could bring some more record-breaking deals, so stay tuned to find out.