Monday, January 11, 2010

Momentum strategy: Haier sponsorship deal for Barclays Center finally announced seven months after report, but is it really "lucrative" (as per NYT)?

More than a year ago, on 12/2/08, Nets CEO Brett Yormark claimed there were nine founding partners, or sponsors, for the Barclays Center.

A 9/16/09 Barclays Center press release about suite sales cited eight founding partners, despite a 6/19/09 New York Times City Room blog report on Haier as "another lucrative sponsorship deal."

Strategic timing

Now, Sports Business Daily (subscribers only) finally confirms the Haier partnership "in a deal that comes two weeks after owner Bruce Ratner closed on the planned $800 million arena."

Actually, the timing might better be described as announced rather than signed the wake of the closing. It's an effort to demonstrate momentum for the arena.

Indeed, according to the summary on NetsDaily, “The closing helps us with the fence-sitters who wanted to wait until we closed on the arena deal,” said Brett Yormark.

Terms unclear

As for the terms, Sports Business Daily reports that "Nets Sports & Entertainment President and CEO Brett Yormark refused to disclose specific terms of the deal."

However, according to NetsDaily's summary of the article, the annual fee is $2 million; as part of the deal, Haier will build a Haier Experience Store inside the arena and supply all appliances for Barclays Center suites as well as appliances for the AY apartments when built.

So for whom exactly is it lucrative?

Maybe the New York Times, which has reported unskeptically on the revision of the Barclays naming rights deal, will stop using the term "lucrative" to describe the Haier deal.

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