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MOSCOW, October 1. /TASS/. Russian flagship air carrier Aeroflot decided against extending its sponsorship contract with US National Basketball Association’s (NBA) club Brooklyn Nets, owned by Russian tycoon Mikhail Prokhorov, due to the lack of marketing yields.
“Cooperation with Brooklyn was terminated as we saw no proper marketing yields,” a source in the Aeroflot management told TASS. “Times are not easy now and we are saving up on such expenses. We are good with our (sponsorship) cooperation with Manchester United football club, which brings colossal (marketing) yields.”
Last month Aeroflot, which has been a Nets sponsor since 2010, announced that its sponsorship contract expired and the air carrier was not pondering the issue of its extension for another year.
Extending the sponsorship contract with the NBA club last year, Aeroflot said it was done to promote the image of the airline in the United States.
"The decision comes from the fact that the sponsorship of one of the most famous American sports clubs will strengthen the image of the airline, as well as facilitate its penetration of the US market with the popular American brand, increase brand loyalty to Aeroflot and increase the number of potential customers among many basketball fans," NetsDaily.com quoted Aeroflot’s spokesman as saying at that time.
Russian billionaire and former presidential candidate Prokhorov repeatedly stated his intention of transferring assets of NBA’s Brooklyn Nets under the Russian jurisdiction. He said earlier this year that the transition of the basketball club would offer “an outstanding opportunity to use NBA technologies for the systematic development of basketball in Russia.”
The 49-year-old billionaire bought the then New Jersey Nets in 2010 for $200 million and later relocated the club to Brooklyn, which has a large Russian population.
Brooklyn Nets started the 2013/2014 season with a poor performance but managed to come back and finished it in the 6th in its Eastern Conference standings with 44 wins and 38 defeats. The club finished the 2012/2013 season with a record of 49 wins and 33 defeats, the second-best record in the Atlantic Division.
According to an earlier report from The New York Daily News, bachelor Prokhorov pledged that the team would win the NBA championship by 2015 or he would punish himself by getting married.