Why Apple is replacing Pepsi as Super Bowl halftime show sponsor in 2023

The next step in Apple’s world domination plan is complete. The software company will sponsor the halftime show at Super Bowl 57 in 2023, replacing longtime partner Pepsi, the NFL announced late Thursday night.

The contract is a multi-year deal, according to the NFL’s release. Per Sports Business Journal’s Ben Fischer, that deal will run five years.

It’s a move that serves the league’s corporate interests well; per Fischer, the NFL was seeking a partner that would help the league expand the content surrounding its 12-minute concert. Apple, one of the biggest media conglomerates in the world, fits that mold to a tee.

Here’s what you need to know about Apple’s latest brand deal.

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Who is the Super Bowl halftime show’s new sponsor?

Apple will sponsor the Super Bowl halftime show going forward, replacing longtime partner Pepsi, which opted to let its deal with the league run out after the 2021 season.

Given the number of eyes the Super Bowl halftime concert draws — last year’s show, which featured mega stars Dr. Dre, Mary J. Blige, Eminem, Kendrick Lamar and Snoop Dogg, among others, racked up a mammoth 120 million viewers — the deal certainly makes sense from Apple’s perspective. And the NFL is certain to receive a pretty penny for its efforts.

Why did Pepsi end its sponsorship of the Super Bowl halftime show?

The simple answer is money. The NFL was hoping to ink a deal that would net it between $40-$50 million per year for Super Bowl halftime show naming rights. Pepsi was unwilling to commit that much money to the cause. So, despite being one of the league’s preeminent sponsors and renewing a sponsorship deal with the league, Pepsi passed on placing its corporate stamp on the halftime gig.

MORE: Best and worst halftime shows in Super Bowl history 

How much is Apple paying the NFL?

Per Sports Business Journal’s Ben Fischer, Apple will pay the league $50 million a year to sponsor the Super Bowl halftime gig. According to Fischer, that contract figure was “on the high end of what the NFL had been seeking when Pepsi left.”

Per New York Post’s Andrew Marchand, that’s not the only way Apple is attempting to make waves in football. The brand is also looking to add NFL Sunday Ticket ton its portfolio. No contract yet, however.

Why did the NFL agree a deal with Apple for the Super Bowl halftime show?

With Pepsi tabling contract talks, it seems the league was hoping for a partner that not only would pay a king’s ransom to put its brand on the spectacle that is Super Bowl halftime, but could offer the league another entry point for additional content. Given its litany of resources, Apple should help the make the festivities that much more immersive. Secondary concerts, behind-the-scenes footage and a docuseries could be on the horizon, helping spread the NFL’s brand worldwide.

Past Super Bowl halftime show sponsors

The Super Bowl has long been one of the most talked-about events in major sports. Unsurprisingly, the game’s halftime game has been a much-coveted spot for advertising opportunities.

There has been a host of brands that have endorsed the halftime show since the turn of the century. Coca-Cola (1988) and Oscar Mayer (1996, 1997) were among the spectacle’s  earliest contributors. In 2000, E-Trade inked a three-year deal with the league for the show in 2000, while Bridgestone nabbed the endorsement slot  for the much-discussed event in 2008.

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