Alex Rodriguez signed with the William Morris Agency to negotiate lucrative endorsement deals (assuming his scandal with “soulmate” Madonna hasn’t hurt his marketability).
WSJ: Alex Rodriguez, the New York Yankees star who has a shot at becoming the greatest offensive player in Major League Baseball history if he avoids injury, has signed on with the William Morris Agency.
The decision reflects the growing importance of Hollywood in athletes’ attempts to turn themselves into enduring brand names that can attract corporate sponsorships in addition to their big-ticket employment contracts. Major agencies, meanwhile, see star athletes as a growth niche. As TV ratings dwindle and movie box-office stagnates, sports-rights fees and the value of sports teams are growing. The marketing prowess of golfer Tiger Woods has become the envy of celebrity handlers.
William Morris, the Beverly Hills, Calif.-based talent representation company, has a client list that includes some of the biggest names in entertainment, sports and the corporate world.
Rodriguez’s current agent, Scott Boras, said he would continue to rep A-Rod in baseball negotiations, which apparently doesn’t include endorsement deals.
This is a nice signing for William Morris Agency, which reps Serena Williams and Dwyane Wade among others, but is weaker among athletes than the more powerful CAA. So, why wouldn’t A-Rod go to CAA? Well, for one, the agency’s numerous sports clients have reportedly created massive conflicts of interest. Also, the mega-agency also counts Madonna among its clientele.
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