SBJ/June 27 - July 3, 2011/People and Pop Culture

Top sales executive leaves MSG for Legends Premium Sales

Mike Ondrejko, one of Madison Square Garden’s top sales officials, has left the company to join Legends Premium Sales as chief operating officer.

Ondrejko
Ondrejko, 35, will be responsible for developing the group’s global business plan. Legends Premium Sales, based in Arlington, Texas, is part of Legends Hospitality Management, a food and retail concessions company co-owned by the Dallas Cowboys, New York Yankees and two private equity firms, Goldman Sachs and CIC Partners. The premium sales group works for teams to sell seat licenses, club seats and suites, and has a sales training and CRM installation program within that part of the organization.

Most recently, Ondrejko was MSG’s senior vice president of corporate hospitality, sales and service, a title he had held since January after being promoted from senior vice president of suites, premium seating and service. Originally hired by MSG in December 2008 as vice president of suite sales for all MSG Sports properties, Ondrejko played a key role in the Garden’s campaign to sell 96 new suites to pay for the building’s three-year, $1 billion renovation. The 20 bunker suites alone cost $1 million annually, and are set to open this fall.

Ondrejko now reports to Chad Estis, president of Legends Premium Sales. The two have known each other for years dating to when both worked for Palace Sports and Entertainment in the late 1990s, and subsequently worked together with the Tampa Bay Lightning and Cleveland Cavaliers.

“The plan is to take our core business, high-end premium seat sales, and cast a wide net to facilitate and drive business for other properties,” Ondrejko said. “To this point, Legends’ business has been through conversations and relationships. We need to set a strategy for what our business should be and execute against that.”

Ondrejko, a northern New Jersey resident, will continue to live and work on the East Coast, a region Legends will focus on for new business. In addition, staying put in the New York market will make it easier for Ondrejko to travel to Europe to pursue opportunities abroad, Ondrejko said.

Legends Premium Sales continues to expand its operation roughly one year after its inception. The company is selling premium seats for the San Francisco 49ers’ proposed stadium in Santa Clara and for the Rose Bowl Stadium renovation project in Pasadena.

In addition, Estis is consulting for AEG to set prices for PSLs, suites and club seats for the proposed Farmers Field in Los Angeles. Ondrejko will also serve in a consultant’s role as part of his new duties for Legends, Estis said.

“We feel like we’re growing to the point where we have enough new [leads] in the pipeline to add a significant player to the mix to handle projects at that high level,” Estis said. “I’ve worked with Mike for several years and he is well-respected in the industry.”

Ondrejko starts his new job today.
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