SBD/Issue 205/Events & Attractions

Breeders' Cup Advised To Begin Promoting Its Brand Globally

London-based consulting firm Value Partners is "suggesting that the Breeders' Cup World Championships promote its brand globally, focus a months-long series of races leading into the fall event and form strategic alliances with key tracks," according to Gregory Hall of the Louisville COURIER-JOURNAL. But the overview unveiled to the media and breeders Friday was "short on specifics and the concepts aren't aimed directly at addressing budget problems." Breeders' Cup President & CEO Greg Avioli said that the organization is "looking at sources that could provide new revenue, including more significant relationships with tracks and more opportunities for international wagering." However, Value Partners officials said that building the Breeders' Cup brand globally "isn't likely to mean taking the two-day event to an overseas track." Value Partners consultant William Field: "It's not something that we think is likely to be a desirable or sensible thing to do. ... I'm not sure that you'd ever need to take it beyond the shores of North America." Breeders' Cup board member Satish Sanan said that "using a series of races from the end of the Triple Crown races through the fall championships, 'we can put together a comprehensive plan which will ... attract more fans, attract more wagers, attract more simulcasting revenue and perhaps along the way even look at more creative alternatives,' which he declined to discuss" (Louisville COURIER-JOURNAL, 7/11). Meanwhile, DAILY RACING FORM's Matt Hegarty noted Breeders' Cup has projected it will run a $6M deficit this year, on total estimated expenses of approximately $50M. Of that $50M, $30.5M is "committed to purse outlays." The deficit has "raised questions about whether Breeders' Cup can continue to fund the current level of purse distribution, by far its largest expense and one that has grown considerably over recent years." In '05, total purse distribution was approximately $20M. Avioli said that Breeders' Cup "expects its nomination revenues to remain below the recent high-water marks for several years" (DRF.com, 7/10).

SPONSORSHIP DEALS: The Breeders’ Cup and Montblanc yesterday announced a deal making Montblanc the exclusive timing category partner for the ’09 Breeders’ Cup (Breeders’ Cup). Meanwhile, Dixiana Stables will join Keeneland Race Course's stable of sponsors as title sponsor of this year's $500,000 Breeders' Futurity. As part of eight Breeders' Cup Win and You're In Races, ESPN Classic will provide live coverage of the Dixiana Breeders' Futurity on October 10 (Dixiana).

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