Jordan retires, but brand may go on

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Marketing executives responded today to Michael Jordan's announced retirement from basketball by asserting that neither he nor his "brand name" will ever really go away. "His name as a brand will not only go well beyond his playing career but beyond his life span," said Tom George, senior VP-athlete marketing for Advantage International, McLean, Va., a sports marketer and agent. Analysts estimate Mr. Jordan's endorsements, ranging from Nike shoes to Rayovac batteries, generate $500 million in sales for the companies he represents. "In the short term, Jordan's future is really bright," said Rick Burton, director of the Warsaw Sports Marketing Center at the University of Oregon's Charles H. Lunquist College of Business. "He continues to be our hero. You'll never forget about Michael Jordan."

Copyright January 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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