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From endorsement to ownership: The focus shift for celebrity talent

/ March 10th 2021
Exports and International Trade

To remain a top-tiered Celebrity Talent in today’s world means that you’ve been deemed interesting in the face of unprecedented, multi-platform competition. You’ve made the cut-through, demonstrated real staying power, garnered valuable reach and global respect. For any entity, partnering with the right talent can present a lucrative opportunity, providing exponential brand equity and an instant connection with large audiences. Before considering entering into a talent endorsement deal, there may be an interesting option to consider — issuing equity to your chosen talent and treating them as a real partner.

Equity can be used to compensate talent instead of, or in addition to, fees. Talent can also be offered the opportunity to purchase equity as an investment. If the right talent owns a piece of a business, and potentially a c-suite title, their interests will be aligned with the growth of the company, and they will be incentivised to align in an authentic and motivated way. And, authenticity goes a long way in today’s world.

Socially savvy talent can directly drive customer acquisition. They will devise innovative ways to promote growth and awareness as their image becomes inextricably linked. When the right partner believes in a company’s mission, they help others believe. But, it will need to make considered sense for talent to want to align.

It’s game-changing for a consumer start-up to secure a top athlete to champion a new product.  The magic happened when Procure Worldwide partnered Shaquille O’Neal into an equity partnership with LA based start-up, Ring inc.

Shaquille’s reach, trusted profile and background as an ex-cop and Ring, a home security company (with a strategic alliance with the LAPD) made him a strong, rational choice. Shaquille conducted walkabouts in downtown LA, gifting products to the neighbourhood.

The partnership resulted in lucrative success for all parties with Ring selling to Amazon for an estimated deal of $1.8 billion, 12-months after Shaquille bought mass awareness to their products.

Issuing equity to a true talent partner is a smart way to position a deal and to build a brand alongside them, with invaluable results. Seeking the advice of experts, such as Procure Worldwide, is key to identifying the right talent, achieving full marketing opportunities and avoiding unnecessary risks.

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