SBJ/November 19 - 25, 2001/Marketingsponsorship

Inside the deal


THE DEAL:

Interwoven signs as a sponsor of the San Jose Sharks.


ESTIMATED VALUE:

$350,000-$400,000 per season


LENGTH:

Two years


DEAL MAKERS:

Kevin Hayden, vice president of corporate communications, Interwoven; Greg Elliott, vice president of corporate partnerships, Silicon Valley Sports and Entertainment; Jennifer Birmingham, sponsorship sales manager, Silicon Valley Sports


KEY ELEMENTS:

Two 12-foot dasherboards at Compaq Center and at Logitech Ice at San Jose, the team's practice facility

Sponsorship of instant-replay features on JumboTron videoboard (visible eight to 10 times a game)

Sponsorship of live chat sessions on the Sharks' Web site

Presenting sponsorship of the annual Sharks Foundation Golf Tournament

Season tickets, suite use (on game basis), tickets and hospitality events for employees

Use of Compaq Center for company events


BACKGROUND:

Interwoven provides content infrastructure software to hundreds of the world's largest companies. The company, based in Sunnyvale, Calif., works with several companies that are also Sharks sponsors, including California Federal Bank, Compaq, Nortel Networks, Seagate and Target. Interwoven sponsors Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong, the U.S. Postal Service Professional Cycling Team and the Interwoven triathlon series in Silicon Valley.


ANALYSIS:

Business-to-business software companies aren't the hottest sponsorship category for sports teams, even in Silicon Valley. While Interwoven gets some brand-building benefits and the opportunity to host clients, the significant part of this deal is its merchandising value within the company.

Interwoven has an extensive wellness program called Interwoven Fit (interwoven.com/careers/benefits), run by Brad Kearns, a former champion triathlete and a full-time company employee. Interwoven can use this sports tie-in to foster the company's strong fitness culture. That's a valuable asset to help recruit and retain employees in a competitive employment market.

If this program didn't exist, then Interwoven would have little to gain from this deal. But Interwoven already has proven it can use sports deals to benefit its most important asset, its employees.

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Related Topics:

Marketing and Sponsorship

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