BRET BLANCHARD ( Advisor, Director of Brand Partnerships, Troy, Michigan)

Over the past 22 years, Bret has had an extensive and impactful career in brand management and business development, specifically in the
automotive and sports industries, with a focus on advertising, trademark licensing and partnership marketing.
In 2001, he left the ad world and continued his career in brand marketing, joining Equity Management Inc., a leading licensing firm in Troy, Michigan. During his 17 year career at EMI, Bret progressed through the ranks ultimately becoming Senior Vice President of General Motors Licensing. While representing the General Motors global licensing program at EMI, Bret strategically leveraged the Chevrolet, Corvette, HUMMER, Goodwrench and ACDelco equites to expand brand awareness, protect the iconic and valuable trademarks, generate substantial revenue to reinvest back into the marketing program, and positively impact consumers, both young and old, through exciting automotive inspired products including toys, replica cars, bicycles, lottery games, apparel, footwear, watches, eyewear, fragrances, power tools, luxury golf carts and boats. In addition to overseeing the General Motors licensing program, Bret led the Rawlings Sporting Goods licensing program where he negotiated new partnerships for collectibles, footwear, socks, apparel, video games, eyewear, publishing, sports drinks and the Rawlings All American Grill inside the Texas Rangers ballpark. In 2018, Bret joined Sports Management Network as Vice President of Strategic Partnerships. In this role, he worked on securing new brand sponsorships for the famed Team Penske and Andretti Autosport race teams, brand endorsements for NASCAR superstars Brad Keselowski and Ryan Blaney, charitable programs for NASCAR superstar Ryan Blaney and the Ryan Blaney Family Foundation, personal service agreements for IndyCar Star Marco Andretti and launched new licensing new product collaborations for racing and cultural icon Mario Andretti along with other strategic marketing initiatives to maximize brand awareness, growth, value and revenue for SMN athletes, drivers, race teams and celebrity clients.
After two years at Sports Management Network, Bret joined the Skybox Sports Network team in May of 2020 as Director of Brand Partnerships focusing on overseeing and accelerating the success of Skybox Sports Network global retail, corporate and consumer sales, marketing,advertising, sponsorships, strategic partnerships and licensing initiatives. A graduate of Western Michigan University in 1997, Bret earned dual bachelor degrees in Business Management and Criminal Justice. Bret is a lifetime Michigan native and lives in Troy with his wife, Michelle, son, Blake, and daughter, Blair.