Panini America and Kevin Durant Agree to Long-Term Exclusive Business Partnership
Panini America, the world’s largest sports and entertainment collectibles company, announced today that it has entered into a long-term exclusive business partnership with Oklahoma City Thunder superstar Kevin Durant, including trading card, autograph, marketing and business development aspects. As part of the agreement, Durant will serve as a global NBA spokesman for the company and his autographed trading cards and memorabilia will be available exclusively through Panini America and Panini Authentic.
In addition, Durant will have unprecedented input into product development and creative for select Panini NBA trading card products, as well as into product development for his Panini Authentic memorabilia products.. This announcement coincides with the launch of Panini’s first TV campaign exclusively featuring Kevin Durant that will air on kid-centric networks including Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon and more.
“Kevin Durant is one of the most recognizable professional athletes in the world but he transcends the game of basketball,” said Mark Warsop, Panini America CEO. “The way he carries himself on and off the court is as inspirational to us as it is to millions of fans throughout the world. We’re proud to be entering this new exclusive relationship with Kevin and the Panini family and look forward to a bright future with him. He’s meant so much to our company, our products and our brand and we’re excited to expand that relationship through both Kevin’s business sense and his fanbase.”
As part of the agreement, Durant and his autograph will appear in Panini’s NBA trading card products and will be part of product packaging for both hobby and mass retail products.
“I’ve been proud to work with Panini for the past five years,” said Kevin Durant. “They’ve been a great partner in terms of overall support and creativity, and I’m really looking forward to expanding my role with our new commercial and by working with their product development team for years to come.”
Panini’s first TV campaign featuring Kevin Durant includes an extended version that will be integrated across digital/social platforms and can be viewed here. The spot features a young Panini NBA trading card collector whose Kevin Durant trading cards come to life as the young fan calls out plays.
“We are really excited about this partnership and this new creative direction. Kevin loves playing the game of basketball as much as our NBA collectors love watching him play and collecting his cards. We thought what’s better than bringing the two together and bringing our Panini NBA trading cards to life in the way so many kids get excited when they open up a pack of cards and find Kevin Durant? We’re looking forward to more great product and marketing collaborations with KD in the future.” said Jason Howarth, Panini America Vice President of Marketing.