Pepsi Challenge: Lightning Switch Over After Deal With Coke Expires
PepsiCo has "signed a seven-year deal with the Lightning, replacing Coca-Cola" as the official soft drink provider "after Coke's deal with the team expired," according to Ashley Gurbal Kritzer of the TAMPA BAY BUSINESS JOURNAL. Pepsi products will be "served for all games and events" at Amalie Arena, beginning with the Lightning's regular-season home opener against the Panthers on Thursday. Pepsi "becomes the team's sixth championship level partner," joining AdventHealth, DEX Imaging, Spectrum, Chase and Heritage Insurance. Amalie Arena will be the "only major league sports venue in Tampa Bay to serve Pepsi products." Lightning CEO Steve Griggs said, "We've become the singular asset Pepsi has in the marketplace, so they'll put a lot of focus on us." The deal grants Pepsi "naming rights to the deck on the arena's second level overlooking Ford Thunder Alley" (BIZJOURNALS.com, 10/1).