Jerome Boateng has signed an exclusive promotional agreement with international sports management group Roc Nation Sports (RNS). Founded in 2013, the full-service agency handles “marketing and endorsement deals, community outreach, charitable tie-ins, media relations and brand strategy”, the group is a division of Jay-Z’s Roc Nation entertainment company.
The German international defender will maintain his existing relationship with management company SAM Sports, while the new partnership looks likely to cover commercial and media opportunities in the Americas.
Asked about his trip to New York Boateng told German paper Bild that Roc Nation offered him a foothold in the growing American soccer market, “This is work for a couple of days. Just like Asia, America is a huge market. We will see if I can conquer that market, but America is a very interesting continent for me.”
The 26 year old’s profile has risen steadily over the past five years as he has grown into his central defensive role for Bayern Munich and the German National Team, winning several Bundesliga titles, the Champions League and the World Cup along the way. Many pundits have hailed him as the defensive keystone for both club and country for the next decade.
Boateng’s partnership with RNS is a sign of the increasing depth of the American market for soccer related media and personal brands. While the global appeal of superstars like Cristiano Ronaldo and Messi has long been proven, the arrival of a rising European star validates the growth of American interest in the sport when a similar player may have gone unknown even five years earlier.
For RNS, bringing on the German international represents a crucial foothold for the agency in a rapidly growing market. Since its inception RNS has built an impressive list of clients across many sports including CC Sabathia, Victor Cruz, Kevin Durant and Miguel Cotto, soccer, however, has been notably absent from the portfolio. The signing of Boateng represents a chance for the relative newcomer to prove itself as a reliable conduit to the US market.