The Swiss watchmaker Tag Heuer on Friday joined a growing list of marketers that are scaling back or dropping their use of Tiger Woods in ads, following revelations of his alleged extramarital affairs.
“The partnership with Tiger Woods will continue,” said Jean-Christophe Babin, president and CEO of Tag Heuer, in a statement, “but we will downscale the use of his image in certain markets for a period of time, depending on his decision about returning to professional golf. We will continue to actively support the Tiger Woods Foundation.”
Tag Heuer is owned by the luxury-goods company LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton.
Procter & Gamble Co.’s Gillette has said it would limit the use of Mr. Woods in its marketing. Earlier this week, global-consulting firm Accenture PLC said it had terminated its six-year sponsorship pact with Mr. Woods. Some marketers, including Nike Inc. and sports-memorabilia retailer Upper Deck Co., have said they will stand by Mr. Woods.
In 2002, Mr. Woods stopped promoting Rolex’s Tudor, a watch he had pitched for about five years, after securing a deal with Tag Heuer, which paid him an estimated $2 million annually for a three-year pact, according to people close to the company.
In 2008, Tag was one of a handful of marketers that kicked off a big marketing push to celebrate the return of Mr. Woods, following a knee surgery that had kept him out of golf for eight months. Tag began a direct mail and billboard campaign that promoted a sweepstakes offering consumers the chance to play golf with Mr. Woods.
Tag Heuer spent $26.4 million on U.S. ads last year, according to TNS Media Intelligence, an ad-tracking unit of WPP PLC. The New York research company says Mr. Woods appeared in 27% of those ads.