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Chevrolet’s deal with United a “no-brainer” says ousted GM official

Former General Motors global marketing head Joel Ewanick has described Chevrolet’s record shirt sponsorship deal with English Premier League football club Manchester United as a “no-brainer” despite the agreement reportedly playing a major part in his exit from the company.

United’s agreement with Chevrolet was made public just hours after GM said it was removing Ewanick, because he “failed to meet the expectations that the company has for its employees”.

Reports at the time claimed that Ewanick did not properly report financial details about the shirt deal with the reigning Premier League champion, which was announced in July 2012.

In his first public remarks about his exit from GM, the Automotive News website said Ewanick stated it was clear that the deal would bring Chevrolet increased brand exposure, purchase consideration and awareness around the world worth “over four times” the sponsorship’s cost.

United in August 2012 announced that its deal with Chevrolet will bring in a record-breaking $559m (€411m) over the seven-year duration of the agreement. United’s partnership with the GM brand will commence in the 2014-15 season and run through 2020-21.

The United sponsorship is one of the few major initiatives from Ewanick’s tenure that has remained in place at GM.

He added: “We crunched more data than I’ve ever seen. We had three separate media and consulting firms take a look at it and tell us what they thought it was worth. We had the internal GM team do it. The way this was going to work over time, I would say that for the amount of money we were talking about, it was the biggest no-brainer I’ve seen.”