What: Coca-Cola, Sprint, Volkswagen, BuzzFeed and VICE are among the international partners for Telemundo Deportes’ coverage of FIFA World Cup 2018.
Why it matters: Power brands providing sponsorship and Spanish-language content across multimedia platforms, even without a U.S. team presence in Russia, demonstrates the desire to connect with this audience.

The countdown to FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCupis on for fútbol fans across the globe, and nowhere is that fervor stronger than in Latin America. Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico, Panama, Peru, and Uruguay will represent the region in various Groups in Russia beginning on June 14, and for many fans, Telemundo Deportes (@TelemundoSportswill be the preferred outlet to follow the world’s largest sporting event.

Telemundo has unveiled its top-level slate of partners, including worldwide sponsors like Coca-Cola (@CocaCola), Sprint (@sprintand Volkswagen (@Volkswagen), and content creators NBCU Digital Lab, BuzzFeed (@BuzzFeedand VICE (@VICESports).

On the content side, in which Telemundo plans more than 1,000 hours, VICE will create short features and stories geared toward the younger soccer audience.

“We are kicking off the 100-day countdown in a big way to celebrate this historic moment for Telemundo Deportes,” said Ray Warren, President of Telemundo Deportes, in a statement. “This will be the most consumed and most widely distributed digital event in Spanish-language television history. All of the initiatives announced today support our mission to bring our viewers the most authentic and complete coverage in the history of the tournament.”

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On the sponsorship side, Coca-Cola will present the post-game shows and will appear on the in-game clocks on Telemundo’s coverage. Sprint will serve as the halftime sponsor and will allow its customers access to a portal with exclusive Spanish-language content. VW gains the lead on the primetime show, airing highlights and commentary nightly from 7-8 p.m.

On the content side, in which Telemundo plans more than 1,000 hours, VICE will create short features and stories geared toward the younger soccer audience. NBCU Digital Lab will work with Telemundo on the digital docu-series “Somos el Mundial” (“We are the World”), while BuzzFeed will create other short-form content for its multimedia platforms.

Some of the personalities on Telemundo Deportes’ coverage include Tab Ramos, Diego Forlán, Jesús “Chucho” Ramírez and Teófilo Cubillas.

Check out the stars of Portada’s Sports Marketing Board, who will meet at Portada Miami on April 18-19 to discuss various topics related to the future of marketing and innovation in sports. Register now!

cover image: 2014 World Cup Final (Danilo Borges-copa2014.gov.br)

Jerry Milani is a freelance writer and public relations executive living in Bloomfield, N.J. He has worked in P.R. for more than 25 years in college and conference sports media relations, two agencies and for the International Fight League, a team-based mixed martial arts league, and now is the PR manager for Wizard World, which runs pop culture and celebrity conventions across North America. Milani is also the play-by-play announcer for Caldwell University football and basketball broadcasts. He is a proud graduate of Fordham University and when not attending a Yankees, Rams or Cougars game can be reached at Jerry (at) JerryMilani (dot) com.

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