Tag Heuer Drops Tiger Woods’ Image

Tiger Woods

According to the daily Swiss newspaper Le Matin, Swiss watch maker Tag Heuer is to drop golfer Tiger Woods’s image from its US advertising campaigns for the foreseeable future. The newspaper quoted chief executive Jean-Christophe Babin as saying the company acted following “recent events” surrounding the sportsman.” This makes them now the third sponsor to drop the troubled sportsman.

This represents a complete about face for the Swiss watchmaker Tag Heuer who as recently as last week said it will continue its association with Tiger Woods despite the golfer’s highly public personal problems.

“We will continue,” the company spokeswoman, Mariam Sylla, had told the Associated Press. “He’s the best in his domain. We respect his performance in the sport.” She added that Woods’s personal life is “not our business”.

To be honest though, I can’t really say this is surprising. If you are familiar with Heuer’s advertising campaign the tag line is “what are you made of?” An apt question really and one that many people are probably asking of Woods now. Before the scandal broke the answer was likely to be discipline, integrity and uncompromising excellence, all positive characteristics which Tag wanted consumers to associate with and consider representative of their brand.

Tiger Woods Tag Heuer

Now, the reality is far different.

The simple fact is that to a certain degree, Tiger Woods has lost his credibility and therefore his core value as a brand ambassador. As Mr Babin went on to tell the online newspaper “we recognise Tiger Woods as a great sportsman but we have to take account of the sensitivity of some consumers in relation to recent events.”

The question is, did they make the right decision? In my mind they did as he has breached the trust of not only his own wife and family but also that of the millions of fans that look up to him and respect him as a role model. From this point forward I think that if Tag Heuer were to retain Tiger Woods as an ambassador, at least in the near future, I would think differently (possibly less) of the brand.

Am I wrong? Please let me know what you think in the comments section below as it would be great to get some discussion going on this hot topic!

Tom Mulraney
Tom is the founder and editor of The Watch Lounge. Together with his team he is dedicated to bringing you the best, original content you won't find anywhere else on the net.


  1. Ramsay Taplin

    The thing that is interesting about this whole Tiger Woods marketing phenomena is that these affairs are just alleged ones. Nothing has been proven. Dropped like a sack of potatoes.

    What I want to know is why Nike are so firm in their support of Tiger and the other brands so quick to drop him?


  2. TPJ23

    Any celebrity endorsements are a complete waste of money. Can anyone tell me they purchased a TH because TW appears in an ad campaign?

  3. Ramsay Taplin

    Disagree entirely TPJ23. Whilst I do not think I have ever said to myself, “I’ll buy a Tag cos Woods is on the advert” there are definite subtle mechanics at play. I think more than anything celebrity endorsements help a company position a brand in a certain way. Perhaps that is why Nike is sticking with him because he still is the world’s most successful sportsperson and that’s all Nike cares about?

  4. FredTownWard

    I think they made the right decision. While it is true that “nothing has been proven”, there is enough out there that hasn’t been denied by Tiger Woods, presumably to Tag Heuer privately as well, to indicate a real problem.

    After all, this was clearly neither a one time fling nor the tragedy of falling out of love and falling in love with someone else. Of course neither of these would be “OK”, but they would at least be less reprehensible (and somewhat more understandable) than the emerging picture of a cad with a girl on every golf course.

    Clearly Mr. Woods has a serious and previously unrevealed character flaw, but to his credit (and unlike some politicians I could name), he appears to possess the decency to be ashamed of himself…

    after he got caught.

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  6. Gaston St-Pierre

    On one hand, this TW story is like politic, the more people talk about him, the more the products -he endorses- sell. People like anti conformists because they wish they could be like that. Then, they could avoid buying such brand products; but they are like sheeps, they buy them products because evereybody else buy them.

    On the other hand, he is paid well enough to endorse products, I think he should be as white as snow in every aspects of his life; Roger Federer is a good example of that.

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