Irving, Texas-based Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM), which has a major presence in Houston, has signed a multiyear sponsorship deal with the NBA, making its Mobil 1 brand of synthetic motor oil the NBA, WNBA and D-League’s official motor oil, motor fuel and lubricant.
The deal includes NBA rights in China, where activation — including in-arena promos and customer hospitality — will begin at next week’s Houston Rockets-New Orleans Pelicans preseason games in Shanghai and Beijing. Exxon Mobil also will soon break NBA-themed creative in China featuring Los Angeles Lakers forward Yi Jianlian.
Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Exxon Mobil will have pass-through rights for its own and other retailers and will back the sponsorship with themed advertising and buys on NBA TV rightsholders ESPN/ABC and Turner, as well as on NBA digital and social media outlets. Exxon Mobil is expected to cut media deals with a number of NBA teams, as well.
Rachel Jacobson, NBA senior vice president of business development and global partnerships, said Exxon Mobil is “endemic to motorsports, but we open up a new demographic.”
The NBA has not had a motor oil sponsor for more than 15 years. Castrol had league rights from 1993 until 2000.