- WynnBET has announced that NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal has signed on as a brand ambassador and strategic consultant.
- Shaq has been a very successful corporate spokesman since his retirement from the NBA in 2011.
- To comply with NBA rules Shaq will be selling his minority ownership stake in the Sacramento Kings.
Shaquille O’Neal–better known throughout the pop culture world as simply Shaq–was an absolute monster on the court during his NBA playing career. In his prime, the 7’1″ 325 O’Neal was a downright unstoppable force in the paint and his teams won four NBA Championships during his career. In 2016, he was rightfully inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. The charismatic O’Neal also found success off the court, releasing several rap albums, appearing in numerous films and a highly sought after corporate endorsement specialist.
Since his retirement, Shaq has found even more success off the court–to the point that he’s arguably one of the most marketable retired NBA players in history. He’s a key component of the successful TNT postgame show Inside the NBA and is as witty as he is insightful. He’s found even more success in the business world. Shaq famously owns multiple Papa John’s Pizza franchises and serves on the company board of directors. In addition to becoming the face of a pizza brand he’s promoted two many other products to name including Epson printers, Buick automobiles and Zale’s Jewelry. Shaq has also made some savvy investments including an early stake in an up and coming tech company called ‘Google’. More recently, he opened a chicken restaurant named ‘Big Chicken’ in Las Vegas and has since added a second location in Southern California. He says that he makes more on endorsements and investments annually than he did in his NBA playing career.
That’s why it was all but inevitable that Shaq would become a ‘brand ambassador’ for a sports betting company. Earlier today, WynnBET announced that O’Neal would become the public face of their brand but also serve as a strategic consultant. In most cases, hiring a retired athlete as a ‘strategic consultant’ wouldn’t mean much but Shaq clearly has some smarts in this regard.
WynnBET, the premier mobile sports betting app from the global leader in luxury hospitality, Wynn Resorts, announced on Monday that 15-time Professional Basketball All-Star, media personality and entrepreneur Shaquille O’Neal will become the app’s new brand ambassador. As part of the category exclusive partnership, O’Neal will provide his expertise to WynnBET as a strategic consultant.
Through the long-term partnership, O’Neal will be featured prominently in WynnBET’s advertising campaigns across TV, digital and print. Additionally, O’Neal will attend in-person fan-facing events, create original content with WynnBET and interact as a guest with company media partners such as Blue Wire Podcasts, Cumulus Media and Minute Media. O’Neal will also be launching ‘ShaqPot,’ a Free To Play (FTP) game housed inside the WynnBET app.
Shaq has long been a regular visitor to Las Vegas and a frequent guest at the Wynn Resorts properties there. Wynn Interactive CEO Craig Billings mentioned this existing relationship as he welcomed him aboard:
“Shaquille O’Neal has been a great friend of Wynn Las Vegas for many years, and we are thrilled to expand our relationship with him through a partnership with WynnBET. A successful businessman, NBA legend and one of the most well-known personalities in sports media, we believe our players will enjoy interacting with him through the WynnBET app and are excited to feature Shaq in our advertising campaign set to debut later this summer.”
For his part, Shaq’s press release quote was pretty low key:
“I love working with my friends at Wynn Resorts and I am so excited to take WynnBET to new heights. Mobile sports betting is having a major moment, and I believe that WynnBET will be a powerful force in the industry.”
The press release also indicated that Shaq would be selling his ownership stake in the Sacramento Kings to comply with NBA rules. WynnBET’s mobile sports betting app is currently live in New Jersey, Colorado, Michigan, Virginia, Indiana, and Tennessee with several states pending.