By Barry Janoff
January 21, 2015: In an effort to take advantage of the intense tax return season and support its “Get Your Billions Back, America” refund campaign, H&R Block has signed a deal with the NBA in what the accounting and tax preparation firm said would be its "first partnership with a North American sports league."
Financial terms of the multi-year deal, which makes the company the official tax services partner of the NBA, were not disclosed.
H&R Block said it would enhance the alliance with multi-media marketing, which currently features a “Get Your Billions Back, America” theme, and then extend its efforts during the remainder of the NBA regular and post-season.
The Kansas City, Mo.-based company will have a presence at jewel events such as the All-Star Game in New York next month; and activate within NBA arenas, beginning with a game in Cleveland's Quickens Loans Arena on Jan. 28 between the LeBron James-led Cavaliers and the visiting Portland Trail Blazers.
"We had been considering partnering with a major sports league for some time, so this opportunity with the NBA just felt right," Kathy Collins, CMO for H&R Block, said in a statement.
The financial firm had a smaller alliance with the NBA last year when the Chicago Bulls hosted "Noches éne•bé•a presented by H&R Block" on March 2, which was part of the NBA's eighth annual Latin nights program.
"We had been considering partnering with a major sports league for some time, so this opportunity with the NBA just felt right."
During the NBA All-Star Game weekend in New York (Feb. 13-15), H&R Block said it would activate at the Sprint NBA All-Star Celebrity Game and NBA All-Star Practice presented by Sean John at Macy's, both in Madison Square Garden.
Within NBA arenas on its "2015 National Consumer Activation Tour," H&R Block will have an interactive, digital kiosk where people can learn about the brand's "Get Your Billions Back America" push and have the opportunity to win prizes, including $2,800, which, said H&R Block, is "the approximate average tax refund according to the IRS."
"We look forward to bringing our nearly 60 years of tax knowledge and expertise to millions of NBA fans," according to Collins. "We are very pleased to begin a relationship with the NBA, a great brand that fits well with our brand," Kathy Collins, CMO for H&R Block, said in a statement. "The NBA season aligns closely with the U.S. tax season, so it's a natural fit."
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