The cost of corruption: Samsung pulls out of Brazil sponsorship

Brazil eye

By Samindra Kunti

November 18 – The Brazilian FA, the CBF, and Samsung have parted ways. Samsung is the fifth major sponsor the CBF has lost since the FIFA scandal engulfed the world game and shone the spotlight on decades of corruption in Brazilian football.

CBF has struggled to shake off its corrupt image with Samsung now following Gillette, Sadia, Michelin and Unimed in exiting their sponsorship commitments. The CBF and Samsung are currently negotiating over the $20 million that would be due in the sponsorship contract that would have run through to 2021.

Samsung said it decided to pull out following a re-evaluation of its marketing strategy. The tech company’s logo has already been taken off CBF’s official website, and it wasn’t displayed on Tuesday during the players’ interviews following the game between Brazil and Peru.

The Brazilians won that World Cup qualifier with goals from Gabriel Jesus and Renato Augusto. Brazil top the South American World Cup qualifying table and after a nervous start are now well on their way to Russia 2018.

Since 2015, the CBF has been an embattled organization. The CBF president Marco Polo del Nero has been feeling the heat from Brazilian authorities and the FBI following the raids at the Baur au Lac hotel in Zurich. Del Nero was initially not indicted by the authorities in the FIFA corruption scandal.

He famously fled Zurich as his predecessor Jose Maria Marin, along with other high ranking football officials, was arrested on charges of corruption. Marin, who pleaded not guilty to corruption charges, has been extradited to the US.

Later in 2015, del Nero was indicted by American investigators. He is accused of having benefited from a scheme to receive bribes when selling football tournament rights. Since then del Nero has not left Brazil, fearing prosecution or detainment abroad. Brazil has no extradition treaty with the United States. Del Nero has missed more than ten official functions of the national team.

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