Monster Energy Co. (MNST) is signed on as NASCAR’s title sponsor for the 2018 Cup Series, the 2nd year of a 2-year $40 million contract signed in December ’16, but the company has yet to announce its intentions for 2019. MNST must decide within the next 30 days if it intends on extending the partnership through the 2020 season. On the surface, it appears that MNST is getting strong value. Sprint paid $50 million/season for title sponsorship rights between 2014 and 2016; but television ratings (down 45% since ’05) and race attendance (admission revenue down 52.7% over last 9 seasons) prevent MNST’s decision from being an easy one.
Howie Long-Short: NASCAR attendance may be down, but RV sales are booming! Thor Industries, the owner of Airstream and Jayco (THO), just reported its all-time best quarter (up 30.6% to $2.2 billion in revenue). Company shares are up 55% YTD, with competitors Winnebago (WGO) and Camping World (CWH) also experiencing strong growth this year (72% and 43%, respectively). An influx of first-time buyers (34% in ’16), a wealth of retiring baby boomers (10,000/day) and record high consumer sentiment levels (a key with large discretionary items), are driving the growth.
Fan Marino: NASCAR held its 2017 Cup Awards ceremony celebrating champion Martin Truex Jr. and providing a farewell to Dale Earnhardt Jr. (winner of NMPA Most Popular Driver award and the Bill France Award of Excellence award), but it was CEO Bill France’s odd behavior that had social media stirring. The NASCAR CEO awarded Truex Jr. his championship ring, leaving the stage without shaking the champion’s hand; he also had a notably brief introduction prepared for Earnhardt Jr., winner of the award in his late father’s name. You can watch the video here. Strange stuff.
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