Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Manga publisher makes product-placement deal

Japan's Asahi Shimbun reports that sporting goods giant Mizuno Corp. has signed a deal with manga publisher Shogakukan Inc. for the Mizuno logo to appear on baseball gear in the popular Major series.

The baseball manga, which features fictional pitcher Goro Shigeno, has sold an estimated 25 million copies.

Under the one-year agreement, Shigeno will be depicted using only Mizuno gloves, bats and other equipment. When possible, other characters will be shown using the company's gear. The sporting goods company has the right to use Shigeno's name and image on products and at events. Mizuno also will produce a glove like the one the character wears in the series.

Major creator Takuya Mitsuda will receive a portion of the money paid to Shogakukan, Viz's parent company. No figures for the deal have been released.