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On Advertising and the FCPA

Tom Fox | November 15, 2015

When can advertising violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act? Perhaps that is not a question often on the minds of compliance officers. The ongoing FIFA corruption scandal, however, demonstrates that any expenditure going out of a corporation may well need to be considered from an anti-bribery angle. This would also include any company that paid out monies to become the product sponsor of any national soccer federation.

Yet what about companies that may have purchased the right to become sponsors of FIFA itself?

A number of marketing opportunities exist that FIFA has employed to generate huge fees for itself. These include television rights, marketing rights, hospitality rights and licensing rights. These rights generated up to $5 billion for FIFA leading up to the 2014 Brazilian World Cup. Who knows how much they could garner for the 2018 World Cup in Russia?

Yet these same sponsors may well be the greatest drivers of change at FIFA. Several sponsors have...

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