Should banks sponsor sports stars?

February 16, 2009

A bit like asking turkeys to vote for Christmas, parliamentarian John Mann has called on the likes of tennis player Andy Murray, equestrian star Zara Phillips and motor racing great Sir Jackie Stewart to scrap their sponsorship contracts with the Royal Bank of Scotland.

Bleeding red all over its accounts and shedding thousands of jobs, the struggling Scottish bank has been heavily criticised for doling out bonus payments to staff despite receiving billions of pounds of state aid.

So the relevation RBS has splashed out 200 million pounds on sports sponsorship – the bank also has a promotion deal with the rugby union Six Nations tournament – has come at the worst possible time.

“That level of excess clearly can’t be justified,” said Mann. “Not one ambassador, but loads, not short-term contracts, but long-term contracts, not small amounts of money, but large amounts of money.”

“I think it would go down very well with the British public if some of them were to cancel their contracts. Some of them would become real heroes if they did. I think they need to consider that this is borrowers’ money we are talking about.”

Should Murray, Phillips and Stewart scrap their contracts and should banks be sponsoring sports stars in the new frugal economic climate?


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This is stupid – why should they cancel a contract – I am sure they would become hero’s NOT.

Instead of picking easy targets who dont these politicians sort out the unemployable and the social misfits who generally make other peoples lives misreable but have all the rights in the world.

Put young repeat offenders in Brat camps for as long as it takes and get long term unemployed to do some comminity service.

Posted by Graham | Report as abusive

I think that they should forego the sponsorship money and that money could then be used to help save people’s jobs. The sports stars are already mega rich so give the normal man in the street a chance to earn some money!!

Posted by Susan | Report as abusive

I expect that Mann will have already suggested to Brown that he could become a “real hero” by freezing the pay and allowances of all Labour MPs in 2009.

After all, “no reward for failure” is the pious cry of the moment and, if Labour can be said to have done anything at all with their time in office, they have most certainly failed to manage the economy.

Posted by Peter | Report as abusive

I can’t understand how Sir Jackie Stewart needs sponsorship – he retired from racing twenty years ago or more!
Surely Andy Murray and Zara Phillips are able to get by without extra funds from RBS.
The government should have done the right thing and left RBS and the others to rot in their own self gratification.

Posted by john | Report as abusive