SBD/July 14, 2014/Colleges

Texas Hires Aspire Group To Manage Ticket Sales After $5-7M In Inventory Goes Unsold

Aspire's deal marks the first time Texas has outsourced its ticket sales
Texas "has tabbed The Aspire Group to manage athletic ticket sales and services for the school," according to John Lombardo of SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL. The deal "calls for Aspire to run the sales operations for all ticketed sports at Texas, including football, baseball, men’s and women’s basketball, and softball." Aspire, which "will be paid an undisclosed management fee to run the ticket operations," will "hire 25 full-time employees to work in Austin alongside the school’s current athletic marketing staff." UT men's AD Steve Patterson said that the school last year "had between" $5-7M in unsold ticket inventory. The deal "marks the first time Texas has hired an outside company to run its ticket operations, but Patterson is familiar with The Aspire Group: He hired the company, which was founded by former NBA executive Bernie Mullin," when he was Arizona State Univ. AD. While this deal marks Aspire's 37th collegiate property, none "have the high profile of Texas." In addition to ASU, clients "include Rutgers, Kansas and Georgia Tech." The company has hired Raiders Dir of Group Sales Mino Solomon to "oversee the Texas operation as director of the Longhorn Athletics Fan Relationship Management Center." Solomon, who will begin the week of July 21, will "be based in Austin" (SPORTSBUSINESS JOURNAL, 7/13 issue).
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