Sportswashed sponsorships – Can they be justified? An analysis of what factors may reduce the potential harm to Coca-Cola’s corporate image as a result of sponsoring the FIFA World Cup 2022
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- Master of Science 
This study examines factors that may reduce the potential harm to Coca-Cola’s corporate image caused by sponsoring the sportswashed event FIFA World Cup 2022. A multiple regression analysis was conducted to investigate whether the factors perceived fit, brand involvement, football involvement, and moral decoupling significantly affect the consumers’ justification of the sponsorship. Furthermore, comparisons were made between Coca-Cola fans, and football fans to explore potential differences. Additionally, moderation analyses were conducted to investigate whether Coca-Cola’s explanation of the sponsorship had a significant effect on the results. This study’s main implication is that consumers claim to have negative associations with the sportswashed event; however, are not necessarily willing to change their attitude towards the brand. Our results indicate that moral decoupling is the only tested factor that minimizes the potential harm to Coca-Cola’s corporate image. Nevertheless, we obtained other valuable findings and discussions of consumers’ apprehension of news and attitude formation, which we claim provide the new area of sportswashing literature an important pointer for sponsor effects.
Masteroppgave(MSc) in Master of Science in Strategic Marketing Management - Handelshøyskolen BI, 2022