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Super Bowl TV ads sell out earlier this year

Every commercial slot earmarked for the broadcast of Super Bowl XLV in February is sold out, Fox said Friday.
/ Source: The Associated Press

The game is more than three months away but it's already a sellout for advertisers.

Fox Sports said Friday it has sold out all of the commercial airtime available for Super Bowl XLV. The game takes place on Feb. 6 in Arlington, Texas.

"The economy is improving and some advertisers that haven't been in the game in the past are back," said Fox spokesman Lou D'Ermilio. "That combination will certainly bode well."

PepsiCo is putting its Pepsi brand back into the game after sitting out last year. General Motors also returns after sitting out the last two years.

Fox declined to say how much ads cost. Last year, a 30-second slot on ranged from $2.5 million to $3 million when the game was broadcast on CBS.

Ad sales for the Super Bowl — television's most expensive night of advertising — started off as usual this spring, but activity picked up right away, much faster than usual, D'Ermilio said.

Usually there's commercial time available the week of the game, he said. Networks do that so they can charge higher prices to last-minute buyers.

D'Ermilio said sales were strong the last time the network had the game, in 2008, just as the economy started to weaken, but the demand was nowhere near what it was this year. He also said ads during the pregame show are selling quickly.

Anheuser-Busch InBev, long the dominant advertiser in the game, will again be back this year. Internet domain company will also return.

PepsiCo announced last month it was bringing its cola brand back to the game. The company is airing three consumer-generated ads each for Pepsi MAX and its Doritos snack brand.

GM will market its Chevrolet brand.

The sellout was first reported by trade publication Broadcasting & Cable.