First Look podcast: World Congress 2017 PBC plots path to maximize distribution NBA Turnstile Tracker Baseball returns to Kinston, N.C. David Stern investing in tech startups NBA regular season sees ratings drop Faces and Places at World Congress Are sponsors wary of outspoken athletes? On Deck With: Mike Unger, USA Swimming Labor & Agents: Rosenthal takes charge
SBJ/July 15-21, 2013/Coast to CoastPrint All
Contest attracting die-hard fans
The Lehigh Valley IronPigs will have the most valuable giveaway in team history Aug. 20 when one fan will be awarded a funeral package valued at $9,300. The IronPigs, Class AAA affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies, are teaming with Reichel Funeral Home for the promotion. Fans can register by submitting an essay by July 31 that describes their ideal funeral and why they feel they will, at some point, be deserving of the funeral.
ANN ARBOR, MICH.
Wolverines to have dynamic pricing
The University of Michigan is moving to dynamic pricing for its single-game football tickets sales this fall. Factors that will determine pricing include team performance, weather and inventory, but ticket prices will not move below their original $65 face value.
Lexus driving with ATP event
Lexus signed a three-year deal with the ATP World Tour’s BB&T Atlanta Open making it the official tournament vehicle for the 2013, 2014 and 2015 events. Lexus vehicles will transport players around the tournament grounds, and the automaker will be the title sponsor of courtside seating, with the first two rows named the Lexus Inner Circle. The tournament, a U.S. Open Series event, begins this weekend.
Sox adding anti-terrorist barriers
The Boston Red Sox are beefing up perimeter security at Fenway Park to defend against terrorist car-bomb attacks, according to a Boston Herald report. Fifty-four security bollards will be installed in front of two gates at the ballpark. The team, which is paying for the concrete-encased steel barriers, is proceeding through city permitting with the goal of completing the installation by Aug. 15.
Bills add energy firm to roster
The Buffalo Bills agreed to a long-term partnership with energy services company BlueRock Energy. BlueRock will become the official electricity supplier of the Bills and will serve as the game week sponsor of the Bills’ home opener against New England.
Bisons get time on Jays’ flagship
The Buffalo Bisons will have eight games broadcast live on Sportsnet 590 The Fan, the flagship station for the Toronto Blue Jays, over the remainder of the 2013 season. This is the Bisons’ first season as the Class AAA affiliate of the Blue Jays.
DePaul hires Legends for naming rights
DePaul University selected Legends Sales & Marketing to sell naming rights for its proposed 10,000-seat arena in Chicago. The private school, a member of the new Big East Conference, announced in May with Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel a plan to build a $173 million arena across the street from McCormick Place in the city’s South Loop neighborhood.
NASCAR stage show set for Navy Pier
NASCAR Contenders Live sponsored by Toyota will make its return to Chicago on Sept. 12, three days ahead of the first race of the 2013 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup at Chicagoland Speedway. NASCAR Contenders Live features all 12 Chase drivers interacting on stage. The event, which sold out last year, will take place at the Grand Ballroom at Chicago’s Navy Pier.
Patriot Place expansion OK’d
The Kraft Group secured approval for an expansion at Patriot Place that would add a 122-room hotel, quick-service restaurant and drug store to the shopping center next to Gillette Stadium, according to a Boston Herald report. There was no word on a construction timeline or cost of the project, endorsed by the Foxboro Planning Board.
Global Spectrum takes over XL early
Global Spectrum took over management of Hartford’s XL Center after the Capital Region Development Authority and Connecticut Innovations reached a deal with AEG to turn over control of the arena two months ahead of an original Sept. 1 transition date, according to a Hartford Courant report. The agreement calls for the authority to pay AEG $500,000 for income AEG would have earned in the two months.
Jags open fantasy football lounge
The Jacksonville Jaguars will open a high-tech fantasy football lounge at the start of this season at what formerly was the Sky Patio at EverBank Field. The air-conditioned room will accommodate 200 to 300 fans and will feature up to 30 HD TVs streaming games and showing NFL RedZone.
The Kansas City Royals introduced their Royals Rewards program. Fans can earn points and have the opportunity to win prizes by supporting the team’s digital programs and platforms by interacting online at royals.com and via the Royals’ official Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts. Points can be redeemed for virtual tokens used to enter team sweepstakes this season.
Dodgers ready ‘retro’ Vin Scully
The Los Angeles Dodgers used Twitter (@Dodgers) to unveil a “retro style” Vin Scully bobblehead that will be issued at a coming promotion. The first 50,000 fans in attendance on July 25 will receive the bobblehead, presented by Bank of America. This marks the hall of famer’s second Dodger Stadium bobblehead.
Brewers’ 50/50 efforts reach $1 million
The Brewers Community Foundation last week eclipsed the $1 million mark in gross revenue raised from its 50/50 raffle program in 2013. The foundation hit the $1 million mark last season on July 16. The largest take-home prize from the offer this year was nearly $30,000, which occurred on Opening Day.
Holman gets the good news upon entering Werner Park.
Photo by:OMAHA STORM CHASERS
After 173 total game dates in the history of Werner Park, the Omaha Storm Chasers welcomed their one millionth fan prior to the Class AAA team’s June 28 game against the Iowa Cubs. Ten-year-old Jaden Holman received a prize package including 10 tickets per game to 10 remaining home games, a Storm Chasers home jersey and a free 2013 season pass to the Centris Family Fun Zone at the ballpark.
Phillies hold postgame dance party
Phillies and Braves fans stayed late after the game to hear beats by W&W.
Photo by:MILES KENNEDY / PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES
Sixers partner with Parx Casino
The Philadelphia 76ers agreed to a multiyear, multiplatform partnership with Parx Casino. Bensalem, Pa.-based Parx becomes the presenting partner for the Sixers Dream Team and will present the Sixers’ halftime radio show for all regular-season games.
Union extends deal with Toyota
The Philadelphia Union reached a multiyear agreement to extend its partnership with the Tri-State Toyota Dealers Association. The group will continue to sponsor the Toyota Plaza interactive area on the west side of PPL Park that hosts pregame entertainment before Union home matches.
Diamondbacks set team 50/50 record
The Arizona Diamondbacks on July 5 set a single-game record of $100,016 generated in the team’s 50/50 Raffle, supported by Western Refining. The previous record of $35,757 was set on Opening Day this season. One fan won $50,008; the remaining $50,008 will benefit the 100 Club of Arizona, American Red Cross and Phoenix Firefighters Charities.
Dome upgrades get cold shoulder
Regional leaders closed the door on a $700 million upgrade to the Edward Jones Dome, according to a St. Louis Post-Dispatch report. St. Louis Convention & Visitors Commission President Kathleen Ratcliffe wrote in a letter to the St. Louis Rams that the agency is “not in a position” to pay for a desired renovation. With the decision, a new round of negotiations is expected to begin, with those talks likely including new stadium considerations.
COAST TO COAST — BEYOND THE COASTS
Barca fans have voice on statutes
Fans and partners of FC Barcelona had the opportunity last week to provide input on new club statutes, according to a Sport report. Barcelona’s operations framework, which has been collaborated on by rights and legal specialists, modernized the team and made it a democracy, according to the report.
Rangers partner with Huawei
Scottish Second Division club Rangers joined forces with telecom firm Huawei to offer fans free Wi-Fi at Ibrox Stadium, according to a Scotsman report. The phased deployment of wireless Internet at Ibrox is set to begin in August on a stand-by-stand basis.
Jockey Club reports $11.9B turnover
The Hong Kong Jockey Club revealed a season turnover high of $11.9 billion with one meeting left, according to a South China Morning Post report. The high-water mark for turnover came in 1997 at $11.9 billion before a decade of post-handover decline, according to the report.
Hotspur will wear HP on jerseys
Hotspur’s Under Armour home and away kits will have HP front and center.
Photo by:TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR
Fulham signs Marathonbet
Fulham FC secured a record-breaking sponsorship with bookmaker Marathonbet, according to a Press Association report. Marathonbet signed a two-year deal with an option of a third and replaces online retail trading broker FxPro. Fulham’s first team and its under 21s will wear the Marathonbet logo on their shirts.
Man U signs with airline, telecom
Manchester United reached a five-year sponsorship deal with Aeroflot that designates the Moscow-based airline as the club’s official carrier. The deal marks Man U’s first commercial venture in Russia. Aeroflot replaces Turkish Airlines in the category. Additionally, Man U reached a three-year deal with Thailand-based telecom firm True Corp. that will see the company’s TrueMoveH become the club’s official mobile partner for Thailand, according to a Manchester Evening News report. True Corp. will supply Man U-related content to its customers through 3G and 4G networks on its mobile devices.
AC Milan signs banking group
Serie A side AC Milan agreed to a three-year sponsorship deal with Banca Popolare di Milano, according to a Soccerex report. The banking group will join AC Milan’s top partner sponsorship tier — the club’s leading commercial category below that filled by shirt sponsor Emirates and uniform partner Adidas.
Adidas opens logistics center
Adidas opened its biggest worldwide logistics center in Germany, according to an NWZ Online report. The new center at the Niedersachen-Park in Rieste/Neuenkirchen-Vörden is expected to turn around 102 million items per year by 2015 and create 250 full-time jobs. Adidas has invested more than $128 million in the site since 2011.
Games to have 37,000 police officers
Russian Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev said that 37,000 police officers have been deployed to protect the 2014 Sochi Olympics, according to a Moscow Times report. Kolokoltsev was repeating official assurances that the Olympics will be safe despite the recent threat of an Islamist insurgency in the region.
Sharks Stadium renamed
Waste management company Remondis signed on as the new grounds sponsor of the National Rugby League’s Cronulla Sharks, according to a Herald Sun report. Sharks Stadium will now be called Remondis Stadium. Toyota ended its relationship as naming-rights sponsor with the Sharks last year.
FIFA hands down suspension
FIFA temporarily suspended Cameroon from global play, citing government interference in the running of the country’s soccer operations, according to an Africa Review report. FIFA in a release said the suspension “prohibits the country from taking part in regional, continental or international competitions, including at club level, or in friendly matches” and takes effect immediately.
For more international news, visit www.sportsbusinessdaily.com/global.