SBJ/October 24 - 30, 2005/Other News

AEG tells 2 top sellers: ‘You’re hired!’

Anschutz Entertainment Group stole a page from “The Apprentice” this month when it had job applicants apply their ticket-selling skills as part of the interviewing process for the company’s Major League Lacrosse expansion team.

The top two sellers — Nekaya Carter of Long Beach, Calif., and Phillip Cardona of Playa Del Rey, Calif. — were given jobs as transitional sales representatives for the MLL team, which begins play in 2006.

AEG, which owns Staples Center, the Los Angeles Kings, The Home Depot Center and four MLS teams, including the Los Angeles Galaxy, selected eight applicants from a field of 104 to compete in a contest to see who could sell the most Galaxy tickets. The field of applicants was selected from TeamWork Online, AEG career fairs and standard referrals.

From Oct. 3-14, the eight finalists sold ticket packages for the Galaxy’s next two home games, the season finale on Oct. 15 and the first playoff game Oct. 23, both against the AEG-owned San Jose Earthquakes.

Carter, the top seller, sold 44 packages for a total of 183 tickets, while Cardona sold 27 packages for a total of 111 tickets. Overall, the contest generated $10,967 from the 513 tickets sold by all eight participants.

Michael Hitchcock, the Galaxy’s vice president of ticket sales and mastermind behind the contest, said Carter and Cardona will become full-time AEG employees and will be given six-month contracts with benefits and base salaries plus standard ticket-sale commissions. The winners begin work Nov. 28.

Hitchcock said the contest allowed the team to get a hands-on look at its finalists while also increasing ticket sales for its sister franchise. Final attendance numbers were not available at press time for the playoff game, but the season finale sold to capacity at 27,000.

The Galaxy led the MLS in attendance this year with an average of 24,204, roughly 9,000 more than the league average.

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