Shopee clarifies Cristiano Ronaldo contract not terminated, set to end in July

Shopee has clarified that it did not terminate its contract with regional brand ambassador Cristiano Ronaldo. Instead, the contract is set to come to a close in July this year. This comes after online portal initially reported that the company has terminated its contract with the footballer and as a result, "all publications, banners, or any materials which include Ronald's image, related to Shopee" are required to be removed before 5 July.

In a statement to Marketing, Shopee's spokesperson said its partnership with Ronaldo will come to a close in July 2020, as part of the agreement in 2019. "The collaboration has been a success and we are happy to have co-created exciting initiatives and shopping campaigns for fans and users in the region. In line with our agreement and common industry practices, Shopee will cease the use of all promotional and marketing assets featuring Ronaldo," the spokesperson added.

Ronaldo was appointed in August last year to work with the team on a wide range of initiatives to engage and inspire consumers in Southeast Asia, beginning with the 9.9 Super Shopping Day. Zhou Junjie, chief commercial officer of Shopee and head of Shopee Singapore, previously told Marketing that the partnership aligns with its strategy to engage and connect with users in the region more meaningfully through iconic celebrities.​ The appointment of Ronaldo came after Shopee tapped South Korean girl group BLACKPINK as its first-ever regional brand ambassador.

"Ronaldo’s values are a natural fit for Shopee. ​He is known for his tremendous ​focus, dedication, and determination​, a reflection of Shopee’s deep commitment to our users," Zhou explained. He added that as one of the greatest athletes today, Ronaldo is a household name and a unifying figure for the region.

Since coming on board, Ronaldo has been been involved in several of its recent shopping campaigns in 2020. Shopee's TV commercial with Ronaldo for 9.9. Super Shopping Day last year recorded about 35 million online views in total in the region. During its 12.12 Birthday Sale, the company sold 80 million items on 12 December across the region, as a result of partnering with Ronaldo for the campaign.

Meanwhile as part of this year's 7.7 Mid Year Sale, consumers stand a chance to win a pair of signed boots from Ronaldo for just RM1 when they participate in One Or Not mobile game. Meanwhile for last year's 9.9 Super Shopping Day, Ronaldo starred in a TV commercial featuring its new jingle inspired from the popular song "Baby Shark".