Are Food and Beverage Companies Praying for the NFL Lockout to End?

According to a report in Cincinnati’s Business Courier today, the prospect of a year off from football in 2011-12 is looking less likely by the hour. The article cites sources from CBS, who claim that the NFL Players Union is “days away” from reaching an agreement with owners that will finally bring an end to the lockout. The source commented, “It’s going to be very difficult for this to get screwed up.”

The news should come as music to the ears of football fans, merchandisers, and the league’s major business partners alike. As recently as last week, NFL owners had considered shortening the 2011-2012 year to an eight game season due to intractable negotiations. Lead beverage makers and food companies, such as Pepsi Co. (NYSE:PEP) which forked out millions to make soft drink, “Pepsi Max” the official beverage of the NFL, have reason to celebrate. The news should also be a boon to sales of beer-makers Anheuser-Busch (NYSE:BUD), Coors (NYSE:TAP), Heineken (HINKY), all of whom do a large portion of advertising through NFL broadcasts.

Watch for stocks of these companies, all major NFL sponsors, to see greener pastures if the lockout officially ends: Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO), General Motors (NYSE:GM), Visa (NYSE:V), FedEx (NYSE:FDX), Campbell’s (NYSE:CPB).

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