SBD/November 1, 2012/Marketing and Sponsorship

Former Nets GM Kiki Vandeweghe Pens WSJ Article Touting Benefits Of Uniform Sponsors

NBA Commissioner David Stern has recently discussed placing sponsor ads on jerseys, and league execs would be “irresponsible if they didn't at least explore every credible new way to keep money flowing in,” according to former Nets GM Kiki Vandeweghe in a special to the WALL STREET JOURNAL. Many fans may “view this change as apocalyptic and wonder if anything in the game they love remains sacred.” But Vandeweghe asks, “Why on earth didn't this happen sooner?" He writes, "As an executive charged with making a franchise into a successful business, I realized early on that total purity was an impossible ideal. ... That's not to say that putting logos on game uniforms is not fraught. If a small amount of mesh real estate proves wildly profitable, how much of a slippery slope are we on?” Vandeweghe: “Could this have a chilling effect on future naming-rights deals, a major source of revenue and funding for the building of any new arena? It could." But if team owners "feel these are risks worth taking, the dice are theirs to roll.” The smart thing would be to "very publicly tie the ads to lower prices for upper-deck seats to keep a broader base of fans engaged” (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 11/1).
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