Aflac Racing to sponsor Carl Edwards for eight NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races in 2008
Columbus, Ga., and Delray Beach, Fla. (Nov. 2, 2007) – Aflac Incorporated (NYSE: AFL) and Office Depot (NYSE: ODP) today announced a new business relationship within the sport of NASCAR that will help both companies reach new customers, engage the loyal NASCAR fan base and leverage opportunities to grow their businesses.
Building on its successful entry into NASCAR in 2007, Aflac will serve as the primary sponsor of Carl Edwards and the No. 99 Ford Fusion for eight races. In addition, Aflac will be onboard the Office Depot No. 99 Ford Fusion as an associate sponsor for all other races during the 2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup season.
Office Depot first entered NASCAR in 2005 as the “official office products partner of NASCAR,” the primary sponsor of Carl Edwards and the No. 99 car, and an official sponsor of Roush Fenway Racing. Aflac entered the sport in 2007 as the “official supplemental insurance partner of NASCAR” and a sponsor of eight total NASCAR Nextel Cup and Busch Series races with four Roush Fenway Racing drivers. The Aflac duck was on the hood of Greg Biffle’s No. 16 Aflac Ford when he won his first NEXTEL Cup race in 2007 at the Life Lock 400 at Kansas Speedway.
“We’re eager to build on the success of our 2007 Aflac Racing program,” said Paul S. Amos II, president, Aflac; COO, U.S. Operations. “As anticipated, our entry into the sport has presented us with many opportunities to forge business to business relationships – such as this one with Office Depot – that benefit both companies.”
“Office Depot and Aflac share similar objectives for what both companies want to achieve with our sponsorships in this sport,” said Chuck Rubin, president, North American Retail for Office Depot. “In fact, one of the primary reasons we got into NASCAR was for the strong business-to-business opportunities this sport provides for a sponsor. Working with Aflac is a great example of how you can grow a sponsorship and make it stronger by leveraging the right relationships.”
At the core of the affiliation are Edwards and the No. 99 Ford Fusion from Roush Fenway Racing. Aflac will be Edwards’ primary sponsor for the following 2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races:
March 9, Atlanta Motor Speedway
April 6, Texas Motor Speedway
April 12, Phoenix International Raceway
June 8, Pocono Speedway
July 5, Daytona International Speedway
July 27, Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Aug. 31, California Speedway
Oct. 11, Lowe’s Motor Speedway
“We are looking forward to growing our Aflac Racing program in 2008,” said Amos. “This sponsorship will allow us to expand our marketing efforts and increase the brand recognition of Aflac Racing amongst our core customers and NASCAR fans.”
“I’m very excited to have the support of Office Depot and Aflac, two of the best sponsors out there,” said Edwards, driver of the No. 99 Roush Fenway Racing Ford Fusion.
For more than 50 years, Aflac products have given policyholders the opportunity to direct cash where it is needed most when a life-interrupting medical event causes financial challenges. Aflac is the number one provider of guaranteed-renewable insurance in the United States and the number one insurance company in terms of individual insurance policies in force in Japan. Our insurance products provide protection to more than 40 million people worldwide. Aflac has been included in Fortune magazine's listing of America's Most Admired Companies for seven consecutive years and in Fortune magazine's list of the 100 Best Companies to Work For in America for nine consecutive years. Aflac has also been recognized three times by both Fortune magazine's listing of the Top 50 Employers for Minorities and Working Mother magazine's listing of the 100 Best Companies for Working Mothers. Aflac Incorporated is a Fortune 500 company listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol AFL. To find out more about Aflac, visit aflac.com.
About Office Depot
Office Depot provides more office products and services to more customers in more countries than any other company.
Incorporated in 1986 and headquartered in Delray Beach, Fla., Office Depot has annual sales of over $15.4 billion and employs approximately 52,000 associates around the world. Currently, the company sells to customers directly or through affiliates in 43 countries.
Office Depot is a leader in every distribution channel — from retail stores and contract delivery to catalogs and e-commerce. As of June 30, 2007, Office Depot had 1,186 retail stores in North America and another 369 stores, either company-owned, licensed or franchised, in other parts of the world. Office Depot serves a wide range of customers through a dedicated sales force, telephone account managers, direct mail offerings and multiple Web sites. With $4.7 billion in online sales during the last 12 months, the company is also one of the world’s largest e-commerce retailers.
Office Depot’s common stock is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol ODP and is included in the S&P 500 Index.
About Roush Fenway Racing
Roush Fenway Racing is NASCAR’s largest team operating 14 motorsports teams, five in NASCAR NEXTEL Cup with drivers Matt Kenseth, Jamie McMurray, Greg Biffle, Carl Edwards and David Ragan; five in the Busch Series with Kenseth, Biffle, Edwards, McMurray, Ragan, Todd Kluever, Michel Jourdain Jr. and Danny O’Quinn Jr.; and three in the Craftsman Truck Series with Edwards, Peter Shepherd, Travis Kvapil, Erik Darnell and T.J. Bell; and one in the ARCA/REMAX Series with Colin Braun and Darnell.