SBD/October 18, 2012/Facilities

SMG Claims Comcast Sweetens Facility-Management Deals With Cable TV Incentives

SMG is asking the federal government to “launch an anti-trust investigation of how Comcast is using its cable television operation to sweeten its bids for contracts managing sports and entertainment venues in Jacksonville and other cities,” according to David Bauerlein of the FLORIDA TIMES-UNION. SMG and Global Spectrum, a subsidiary of Comcast, are “vying for a contract to manage EverBank Field, Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena, Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville, Times-Union Center for Performing Arts, Prime Osborn Convention Center and the Ritz Theatre and Museum.” Global Spectrum and SMG “submitted their proposals in May, but Mayor Alvin Brown has not made his choice on the rival bids.” SMG in letters dated Oct. 10 “points to provisions in Global Spectrum’s bids that highlight the company’s ability to provide free cable television advertising to promote Jacksonville’s facilities and their events.” The proposal cited in the letters indicate that the offer is “worth at least $225,000 per month.” The letters also "cite Global Spectrum’s offer of discounted advertising and marketing opportunities in markets where Comcast manages venues and provides cable television service” (FLORIDA TIMES-UNION, 10/18).
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