Braves, Falcons Looking For Same Corporate Dollars In Search For Naming-Rights Partners
The Braves and Falcons are both "preparing to sell the names of their new stadiums to corporate sponsors, a task potentially complicated by having two Atlanta venues on the market at the same time," according to a front-page piece by Tim Tucker of the ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION. Execs with each team described the process as in the “early stages and not to the point of negotiations." Falcons CMO Jim Smith: "We are going to run into each other in the marketplace." Falcons President & CEO Rich McKay added, "The great thing about that is, it’s a big marketplace." Braves Exec VP/Sales & Marketing Derek Schiller said he thinks they are "unique opportunities" likely to appeal to different companies. Tucker notes a "top of the market" deal could be similar to MetLife's deal with the NFL Jets and Giants for a reported $17-20M a year, AT&T's deal with the Cowboys for a reported $17-19M a year, or Levi's deal with the 49ers for $11M a year. Smith said the Falcons "should be well within that range." But Tucker notes the Braves are "likely to be in a lower range" based on the deals for many MLB ballparks. Still, Grinstead said of the Braves' new ballpark, "Signage is a huge part of the price, and sitting there between two interstates gives the Braves a premium opportunity." The Braves also are "counting on an adjacent mixed-use development to enhance the value of their stadium’s name." Schiller said, "We believe a naming-rights partner will have some tie-in to the development, including signage and some form of (brand) activation area." The Falcons retained Premier Partnerships and the Braves hired Van Wagner Sports & Entertainment to "help value and market the names," and both agencies have "extensive experience selling naming rights" (ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION, 6/19).