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Volume 22 No. 32
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Echo to sponsor MiLB Hispanic outreach

Minor League Baseball has signed the first corporate sponsor for its Hispanic outreach program, aligning Echo Inc. with its Copa de la Diversión.

The outdoor power tool brand, a division of Japanese manufacturer Yamabiko Corp., will become the official outdoor power tool of MiLB and Copa de la Diversión, and its products will be used by select teams for their ballpark upkeep.

The Copa de la Diversión (“Fun Cup”), introduced early this year, represents an ongoing effort by MiLB to connect more deeply with Hispanic audiences through special theme nights, customized jerseys and hats, temporary nickname shifts and other activities. The program will expand from 33 to 72 affiliated teams in 2019, and has generated a nearly 13 percent average attendance boost and elevated merchandise sales for participating clubs thus far.

“Copa has been a powerful program right out of the gate, and the great thing is that we now have a case study with real, measurable results,” said David Wright, MiLB chief marketing and commercial officer. “That is something that has garnered the attention of big brands. Echo has aligned fully with the vision of Copa, and we expect them to be the first of many brands attached to this.”

Financial terms were not disclosed. Planned activations for Echo include the creation of a “Power Hour presented by Echo” in which the company’s products will be showcased during pregame activities at select ballparks next year. The company also will be featured on various MiLB media platforms, including MiLB.com, MiLB.TV and the first Pitch Mobile App, and the deal also includes a supporting partnership for next month’s Baseball Winter Meetings and Baseball Trade Show in Las Vegas. Local Echo dealers will additionally get the use of MiLB and individual minor league team marks.

Wayne Thomsen, Echo vice president of marketing and product management, said the deal “provides us with a good grassroots approach to reaching our customers. … The fact that teams will use Echo products for field and ballpark maintenance further reinforces the connection.”