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Lionel Messi has signed a five-year global brand ambassador contract with Hard Rock International, making him the first athlete to join the gaming, entertainment, and hospitality company.
This is the first phase in what the firm promises will be a year-long 50th anniversary celebration that will include a Messi-inspired retail range.
“I am honoured to partner with such a renowned brand as Hard Rock, and even more so at this historic moment – its 50th anniversary.” added Messi.
“Sports and music are an integral part of my life, a perfect combination between my profession and my leisure time. Uniting both is a great success, and I am very happy that they have counted on me for this special outcome. It is an honor to be the first athlete to partner with a brand who has a history of teaming with music legends.”
The agreement was finalised with a gift exchange in which Messi donated a replica of one of his Ballon d’Or trophies, and HRI responded with an electric guitar custom-made for Messi.
A replica of this, signed by the player, will be displayed at a Hard Rock facility to be announced soon, adding to a collection of over 86,000 items of music memorabilia.
50th anniversary milestone
Jim Allen, chairman of Hard Rock International said: “Over the past five decades, the Hard Rock brand has grown to become one of the world’s most recognisable and beloved brands, with a cafe, hotel or casino located in 68 countries.
“As we reached our 50th anniversary milestone, we knew that we needed to partner with an icon to help us celebrate in a new and unexpected way, and there was no better choice than the legendary Lionel Messi.”
Last Monday, HRI announced a partnership with Ultimate Jet Charters, in which an exclusive aircraft service will bring guests to its Atlantic City resort.
The new 30-seat VIP air charter service, which will be known as Hard Rock Air, will cater to high-end consumers going to the resort from chosen markets across the region.