After US giant Nike dropped him, the Philippine boxing hero Manny Pacquiao is holding sponsorship negotiations with sports apparel companies.
photo credit: inquirer
Nike cut ties with the eight-time world champion last week after he described gay couples are worse than animals. Nike described his comment on gay couples as ‘abhorrent’. Pacquiao’s comment touched off a firestorm of international criticism, particularly from US athletes and the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.
Eric Pineda, Pacquiao’s business manager, told AFP without naming the companies that there are several already now in the pipeline. He said that they included a ‘multi-million-dollar’ brand that would likely replace Nike as the supplier of Pacquiao’s sports gear. He also said that no Philippine-based companies had dropped Pacquiao as a commercial endorser despite the furor over his comments. He also said that they will still be sponsoring Manny. Just look at his shorts, reffering to commercial logos that cover the training togs of Pacquiao. Manny is preparing to fight US foe Timothy Bradley in Las Vegas in April and then retire from boxing.
Pacquiao who’s considered as a national hero in the Philippines, has made a fortune endorsing products and brands ranging from automobiles, motorcycles, car batteries, pizzas, beer, a bank and even property firms. A devout Christian, Pacquiao has issued a public apology while also defending his comments, saying he was merely quoting the Bible.
He remains popular all over his own country, where he is running for a seat in the Senate in May elections. It’s a higher-profile national post than his current seat in the House of Representatives representing a southern province. In surveys, it’s shown that despite Pacquiao’s lackluster performance in parliament, he is likely to win a Senate seat.