Visa Threatening to Drop Sponsorship Over FIFA Scandal

The FIFA scandal now enters into the reaction phase as corporate sponsors begin to warn soccer’s governing body that unless the corruption ends their sponsorship will.

Seven members of soccer’s governing body were charged with corruption this week and now companies such as Coke, Visa, and Adidas have already warned FIFA that they are carefully considering their further support of international soccer.

Despite that FIFA insists that the charges are actually a good thing because it is helping them root out corruption, and despite that Sepp Blatter, FIFA’s top man, refuses to step down preferring instead to “see the scandal through,” corporate sponsors do not think the busts are such a good thing.

On Wednesday, Visa announced that it was reassessing its support of soccer and Coca-Cola and Adidas announced they were also quite concerned.

The FIFA bigwigs are being accused of racketeering, fraud and money laundering, and also face specific charges of taking bribes in connection with the 2010 World Cup and other big games.

In a sstatement from Wednesday, Visa urged FIFA to take “swift and immediate steps” to address the corruption problem.

“This starts with rebuilding a culture with strong ethical practices in order to restore the reputation of the games for fans everywhere,” Visa added. “Should FIFA fail to do so, we have informed them that we will reassess our sponsorship.”

Sponsors have been speaking up on issues that concern them for some time, though. Recently Adidas, Coca-Cola and Visa all urged FIFA to support human rights issues by insisting that Qatar improve migrant workers’ rights in their country ahead of the 2022 World Cup.

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at igcolonel@hotmail.com


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