More tales from the Great Recession:
The Bank of Ireland announced that its sponsorship agreement with Padraig Harrington won't be renewed when it expires in May. All the bank got for its money was a player who won three major championships in 15 months.
But forget the national hero stuff. Reality rules when it comes to the economy. IrishGolfDesk.com reports that the Bank of Ireland is now 15.7
percent owned by Irish taxpayers, so that's the end of frivolous things like marketing and brand-building, nothing against Harrington.
Tom Hayes, Chief Executive of Bank of Ireland Corporate Banking, said: "Our decision to sponsor Padraig... has reaped fantastic benefits for our brand. While we were confident that we were partnering with a great golfing talent, he surpassed all our expectations... Padraig has been a wonderful ambassador for the Bank both on and off the course and we have no doubt that he will go on to enjoy even
greater success in the years ahead. We are exceptionally proud of our association with him and we wish him continued success."
Harrington is reported to have earned at least €400,000 a year, plus bonuses, from the deal. In return, he wore the Band of Ireland logo on his shirt and did three corporate outings a year--one
each in Ireland, the United Kingdom and the United States.