SBD/July 11, 2011/Marketing and Sponsorship

NHL, NBC To Form Joint Venture In Effort To Streamline U.S. Media Sales

The NHL and NBC today announced the creation of a joint sales venture designed to streamline the league's U.S. media sales through '15-16. NHL media sales for all national platforms will be sold by NBC Sports Group, which will absorb some NHL media sales employees. All traffic generated by NHL.com and other league sites will be attributed to NBC Sports Digital. Current and future NHL marketing partners will continue to buy media via the NHL Integrated Sales Department. Financial terms were not disclosed (THE DAILY). NHL COO John Collins said that "approximately 14 NHL staffers" will take part in the joint venture. The NHL "will continue to sell broader league-based sponsorship packages," but Collins said, "We wanted to share sales opportunities, both to protect our corporate partners and to create opportunities for our corporate partners to spend on NBC and Versus." Collins indicated that the venture "should help drive more ad money to hockey ... as NBC Sports can try to use its broadcasts of golf, 'Sunday Night Football,' the coming Super Bowl and Olympics to interest marketers in broader ad packages for its sports properties." Though the NBA "has in the past turned over some digital ad sales" to Turner, "sports leagues and owners of major sports events typically oversee their own advertising relationships" (ADAGE.com, 7/11).
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