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NFL CONNECTS WITH SPRINT FOR MARKETING ALLIANCE
Published May 10, 1996
Sprint and the NFL signed a three-year marketing pact, believed to be the largest of its kind, which takes effect immediately. The deal gives Sprint national exclusivity and a broad marketing platform, new revenue streams, and the chance to partner with a major pro sports league. Sprint takes over the category from GTE while beating out challenger AT&T. While the NFL would not confirm details, the AP puts the value of the deal at $87M. Yesterday's WALL STREET JOURNAL reported the deal close to $100M (THE DAILY). THE WORD: Sprint Chair & CEO William Esrey said they will "fully leverage this alliance with the NFL in delivering against all of our marketing strategies in long-distance, local and wireless communications -- while at the same time delivering superior telecommunications solutions to the league and its member teams." He noted Sprint will help fans "get closer" to their favorite teams and the sport and for examples, cited Sprint's interactive 800 service that will allow fans to register for the Gatorade Punt Pass & Kick competition, and Sprint's help to enhance the interactive aspects of Team NFL, the league's web site. SERVICES WITH A SMILE: The agreement will provide the NFL with Sprint services including: global long-distance voice, data and video; local voice, data and video; wireless services, including Sprint's entrance into Personal Communications Services; internet access services; telephone calling cards, including prepaid calling cards; directory services; telecom hardware; and interactive multimedia products such as interactive 800 service and video and audio conferencing. In addition to marketing rights with the Super Bowl, the Pro Bowl and the NFL Draft, Sprint's sponsorship includes co-titlement of the NFL Experience, as well as involvement in the Quarterback Challenge and Run To Daylight events. Sprint will sponsor NFL Quarterback and Coaches Clubs, and hold exclusive rights to market Quarterback and Coaches Club prepaid calling cards (NFL).