SBD/17/Facilities Venues

DENVER'S NEW ARENA TO BE PEPSI'S LATEST POUR-HOUSE

     Pepsi and Comsat's Rocky Mountain Entertainment announced
yesterday that Denver's new $132 arena, to open in '97, will be
named the "Pepsi Center."  Pepsi will have exclusive rights to
name the arena, serve its products there and have multi-year
sponsorships of the Nuggets and a possible NHL team.  Rocky
Mountain Entertainment is a subsidiary of Comsat, which owns the
Nuggets.  Financial details were not disclosed, however, in a
presentation last month, Comsat president Bruce Crockett had
"valued the deal at about" $68M.  Eric Foss, GM of PepsiCo's
Western region, said that number is "greatly exaggerated."  Coke
has exclusive "pouring rights agreements" for its products in 24
of the 27 NBA arenas.  According to Information Resources, Denver
is a very strong market for Pepsi, as they hold 46% of the market
share, while Coke holds only 28% (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 3/17).
The DENVER POST reported in November Pepsi would pay $15M up
front for the naming rights and an additional $1M a year for 20
years.  Comsat and Pepsi may also jointly promote events at the
proposed arena and other local venues (Chance Conner, DENVER
POST, 3/16).
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