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Rugby League sex scandal threatens sponsorships

Rugby League sex scandal threatens sponsorships
May 20, 2009

The sex scandal involving Australian rugby league players has prompted sponsors to revise their contracts, and warnings that companies may be deterred from backing the sport.

Revealed in an ABC documentary in which a New Zealand woman told of her trauma as a 19-year-old, seven years ago, following group sex with rugby players. Former player and high profile media personality Matthew Johns has lost his job as a television presenter as a result of his involvement while

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd was moved to call for sports organisations to foster greater respect for women.

Sally Loane, a spokeswoman for Coca-Cola Amatil, Australia's largest soft-drink maker and a National Rugby League sponsor told Bloomberg that "we want to protect our brand and our name.

"In respect of controversial behaviour, weâll be tightening up those agreements. We donât want our sponsorship diminished and we certainly donât want adverse publicity against us as sponsors."

Lynne Anderson, Managing Director of Repucom International Australia & New Zealand, which advises sponsors, said that the rugby league must "prove they are eradicating these issues. They are clearly not acceptable or palatable to sponsors."


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