This study discusses how athlete endorsement may facilitate a non-sports brand’s extension into a sports-related product category. We investigate the effect of athlete endorsement on consumers’ intention to purchase the new sports-related products offered by the non-sports brand in the context of the UNIQLO-Kei Nishikori endorsement partnership. We propose that a brand-congruent athlete endorser will enhance consumers’ perceived brand-extension fit, which in turn leads to a higher purchase intention. Moreover, the positive effect of endorser-brand fit on brand-extension fit should be attenuated, i.e., negatively moderated, by consumers’ brand familiarity. A total of 387 usable responses from Japanese aged above 18 were collected via the Internet. Despite insufficient evidence for the negative moderating effect of brand familiarity, SEM analyses confirmed that brand-extension fit fully mediated the effect of endorser-brand fit on consumers’ purchase intention. Our findings suggest athlete endorsement contributes to a nonsports brand’s successful extension into sports-related product category.
This paper examines why firms abolish their company sport clubs by using a deinstitutionalization concept and statistical analyses. Although literature has suggested reasons for the abolishment, little research has empirically studied them. Therefore, this paper does research on the mechanism behind the abolishment by looking at the influence of economic and social factors on it and conducting an event history analysis among 95 Japanese companies with a long distance club between 1992 and 2012. The results show that, as an economic factor, the significance of an economic crisis in the company influenced on the abolishment. On the other hand, social factors such as the employee downsizing, the increases in foreign shareholders and the normative pressure from the other firms had an effect, though interaction terms between economic and social factors did not. Based on these findings, the contributions of this paper will be discussed.
The number of universities with sport management-related departments and courses have rapidly increased throughout the country, and program offerings have diversified. In this present study, we aim to clarify the present situation of sport management education in Japanese universities and examine whether it has changed in the past decade (Matsuoka, 2008). A list of sport management programs was compiled after review of literature (Inoue, 2012; Ishibashi, 2017; Matsuoka, 2008; Ogasawara, 2013). Eighty-four universities were found in this process. A content analysis of program’s websites and syllabi were conducted to identify the unique features of the programs. Results indicate that 44 universities (52.4%) housed the sport management program in the faculty of management and economics. Results also suggest that there were no major changes regarding the proportion (52.4%) as compared to ten years ago. Lastly, the numbers of faculty members were less than two at about 80% of the programs.