IBJNews

Luck throws weight behind Body Armor with equity stake

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

Andrew Luck said he wanted to prove himself on the field in the National Football League before pursuing sponsorship opportunities off it.

After leading the Indianapolis Colts into the playoffs as a rookie in 2012 and orchestrating eight game-winning drives in his first 17 regular-season games, Luck said he is now looking to “reap the benefits” from an endorsement standpoint. The Colts’ 24-year-old quarterback has agreed to an equity stake in Body Armor’s SuperDrink, with a multiyear brand partnership in which he’ll appear in national and regional advertising.

“There’s always a risk in any equity, but I feel like there’s a great market for a sports drink that’s good and good for you,” Luck said.

Luck joined Nike Inc.’s stable of endorsers in March 2012, a month before the Colts made him the first pick in last year’s NFL draft. While fellow quarterback and No. 2 pick Robert Griffin III of the Washington Redskins signed a series of sponsorships with companies such as Subway restaurants, Adidas AG, Electronic Arts Inc., Castrol Motor Oil and EvoShield, Luck said he wanted to take it slower.

“After I got drafted, I was still in school, finishing up at Stanford, so didn’t have time to partake in some of the time commitment that the endorsements involve,” Luck said. “I didn’t get as fast off the ground. I wanted to prove it on the field first and if I had a decent year, reap the benefits off of that. This offseason has been a little busier.”

Luck joins Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice, New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski, Philadelphia Eagles running back LeSean McCoy, Los Angeles Angels outfielder Mike Trout and San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey as sponsors for Body Armor, whose chairman is former Vitaminwater co-founder Mike Repole. Coca-Cola Co. bought the parent company of Glaceau Vitaminwater for $4.1 billion in 2007.

“Him being selective about brands speaks volumes about what Body Armor SuperDrink is,” Repole said by e-mail. “When we first heard he was a fan of the brand, we were excited. After meeting each other, we both recognized a ton of similarities between what Andrew intends to do on the field and what we intend to do as a brand.”

Luck was part of a group of NFL rookies who promoted PepsiCo’s Gatorade sports drink, though he said he wouldn’t term the partnership an endorsement. Luck said he discovered Body Armor’s SuperDrink while working out during the offseason at Stanford University, liked its taste and claims that it has 2-1/2 times the electrolytes of other sports drinks and twice as many vitamins as enhanced waters.

“I used it a lot and then understood that with the position of a quarterback and some of the off-the-field things, maybe there’s a chance to contact these guys and get some free drinks out of it,” Luck said with a laugh. “My agent called them up and we’re here now.”

Luck sought to become a shareholder in Body Armor, a path also taken by athletes such as Patriots quarterback Tom Brady with Under Armour Inc., golfer Tiger Woods with Fuse Science and New York Mets third baseman David Wright with Vitaminwater.

Luck and Body Armor didn’t disclose the size of his equity stake.

“When Vitaminwater first started, we didn’t have the financial resources that we have now with a brand like Body Armor, so the investment with athletes like David Wright was more out of necessity,” Repole said. “It is great to see athletes like Andrew coming to us asking about an equity stake. It shows how passionate he is about Body Armor and how he believes in us being a mega brand.”

Luck said while he hasn’t talked with other athletes who have taken equity stakes in a company, he’s seen and read media reports that Wright pocketed $20 million for his half-percent stake in Vitaminwater when the company was bought by Coca-Cola a year after he started appearing in advertisements.

“The hope when things like this happen is the Vitaminwater story,” Luck said.

ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. I took Bruce's comments to highlight a glaring issue when it comes to a state's image, and therefore its overall branding. An example is Michigan vs. Indiana. Michigan has done an excellent job of following through on its branding strategy around "Pure Michigan", even down to the detail of the rest stops. Since a state's branding is often targeted to visitors, it makes sense that rest stops, being that point of first impression, should be significant. It is clear that Indiana doesn't care as much about the impression it gives visitors even though our branding as the Crossroads of America does place importance on travel. Bruce's point is quite logical and accurate.

  2. I appreciated the article. I guess I have become so accustomed to making my "pit stops" at places where I can ALSO get gasoline and something hot to eat, that I hardly even notice public rest stops anymore. That said, I do concur with the rationale that our rest stops (if we are to have them at all) can and should be both fiscally-responsible AND designed to make a positive impression about our state.

  3. I don't know about the rest of you but I only stop at these places for one reason, and it's not to picnic. I move trucks for dealers and have been to rest areas in most all 48 lower states. Some of ours need upgrading no doubt. Many states rest areas are much worse than ours. In the rest area on I-70 just past Richmond truckers have to hike about a quarter of a mile. When I stop I;m generally in a bit of a hurry. Convenience,not beauty, is a primary concern.

  4. Community Hospital is the only system to not have layoffs? That is not true. Because I was one of the people who was laid off from East. And all of the LPN's have been laid off. Just because their layoffs were not announced or done all together does not mean people did not lose their jobs. They cherry-picked people from departments one by one. But you add them all up and it's several hundred. And East has had a dramatic drop I in patient beds from 800 to around 125. I know because I worked there for 30 years.

  5. I have obtained my 6 gallon badge for my donation of A Positive blood. I'm sorry to hear that my donation was nothing but a profit center for the Indiana Blood Center.

ADVERTISEMENT