SEAT
              for the premium seat industry                      fall 2009




              Published by the Associa...
Marvel Makes the Game!
    Contact us for details on our stadium
    programs and these Marvel exclusives!
           Inst...
S E AT         3


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S E AT


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               ...
Use for Cooking & Serving
                               Ideal for Induction Buffets
                               5-Ply ...
SEAT
    coNTENTS FALL 2009
                                                                        Beacon of Light: The N...
ASSociATioN oF Luxury SuiTE DirEcTorS

    New ALSD Members                                                               ...
S E AT        17

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   Buyers Guide fall 09.indd 17    9/28/2009 9:06:3...
New ALSD Members
    Tom	Olson                               Marie	Patten                             Anne	Wheat          ...
Perlick is proud to be the FIRST company
                                certified by the ALSD.




                       ...
New ALSD Members
    Jed	Justman                         Missy	Pender                         George	Murphy               ...
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MOTOA4™ Mission Critical Portfolio




                                                       THE INCIDENT NEEDS YOUR FOCU...
Industry and Association News
     Ohio University Research: What is premium seating and who sells it?
     By: Amanda Hau...
While your team is winning the game, Agilysys helps you win the crowd.




                                               ...
Industry and Association News
    MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL                                                      improved aren...
Design creates culture.
                                              tell your story




                              lo...
An Idea
             Whose Time
                  Has Come
                                                               ...
SuiteAgent at a Glance
     “The premium seat market was not a business; it was                            SuiteAgent was ...
2000
    employees hired to operate, sell, and lease the skyboxes. I’m not even
    sure if they officially had a name, bu...
And Now a Word from Your Customers
    Question: If you want to know what your customers really think,             looking...
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
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SEAT Fall 2009
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SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
SEAT Fall 2009
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SEAT Fall 2009

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Cover Story:
An Idea Whose Time Has Come

Feature Stories:
Introducing the New Leader of the Pack
Coming the Next Age

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SEAT Fall 2009

  1. 1. SEAT for the premium seat industry fall 2009 Published by the Association of Luxury Suite Directors The Second Generation Begins • Where we were; where we are going • What your best customers are saying • Where to find new customers • Per-event suites and their new place of power PLUS: Meet the ALSD’s New President, Board of Directors, and Executive Director 1-12.indd 1 12/15/09 5:40 PM
  2. 2. Marvel Makes the Game! Contact us for details on our stadium programs and these Marvel exclusives! Installation service M Stainless steel or your choice of color Team Logo graphics applied with SonicImage™ Technology. Deluxe Half Keg Beer Dispenser Refrigerated Drawer 24” Refrigerator UL Listed suitable for outdoor use UL Listed suitable for outdoor use UL Listed suitable for outdoor use Refrigerator cabinet encased in high performance Exclusive Sentry System™ monitors critical Refrigerator cabinet encased in high stainless steel functions including over/under temperature, performance stainless steel power failure and door ajar conditions Holds half and quarter kegs and has casters for mobility Two removable tempered glass shelves Touch controls and electronic display are Complete with mug rail, built-in drain, draft tower, discreetly located Three door shelves hoses, CO2 tank and regulator, drip tray and interior Refrigerator cabinet encased in high Automatic interior light floor shield performance stainless steel Optional heavy-duty 23-ounce vinyl cover Adjustable temperatures from frosty cold to 52° F for Increased capacity drawers vertically store dark lagers and ales 24” W x 34”H x 24 1/4”D 2-liter and wine bottles Full auto defrost Full extension drawer slides provide easy access Easy-to-roll casters add portability 24” W x 34”H x 24 1/4”D 24” W & 38”H with casters x 24 1/4”D T: 877-650-5775 For further details and other amazing products visit us at E A T S www.marvelrefrigeration.com www.marvelrefrigeration.com Buyers Guide2fall 09.indd 2 1-12.indd 9/28/2009 9:05:39 AM 12/15/09 5:40 PM
  3. 3. S E AT 3 1-12.indd 3 Buyers Guide fall 09.indd 3 12/15/09 5:40 PM 9/28/2009 9:05:45 AM
  4. 4. S E AT 1-12.indd 4 Buyers Guide fall 09.indd 5 12/15/09 5:40 PM 9/28/2009 9:05:46 AM
  5. 5. 8 S E AT 1-12.indd Guide fall 09.indd 9 Buyers 5 9/28/2009 9:05:54PM 12/15/09 5:40 AM
  6. 6. Use for Cooking & Serving Ideal for Induction Buffets 5-Ply Bonded 18/10 Stainless Steel for Maximum Durability Aluminum Core for Fast, Even Heat Distribution Gas, Electric & Induction Ready Rolled & Sealed Rims 800-535-8974 www.springusa.com13 S E AT 1-12.indd 6 12/15/09 5:40 PM Buyers Guide fall 09.indd 13 9/28/2009 9:06:34 AM
  7. 7. SEAT coNTENTS FALL 2009 Beacon of Light: The New Meadowlands- home of the New York Jets and Giants starting next season. 8 NEW MEMBERS 36 LET’S HERE IT FOR NEW YORK Your traveler’s guide to the host city of the 2010 ALSD 14 INDUSTRY AND ASSOCIATION NEWS Conference and Tradeshow: New York City- the city with $4 billion in new venue construction. COVER STORY 20 AN IDEA WHOSE TIME HAS COME 50 LEADING THROUGH INNOVATION After 20 years of building a solid foundation, the premium Today’s IT leaders in the sports and entertainment venue seat industry is finally prime for the next idea to carry us into marketplace are found in the SEAT Consortium. Check out the next generation. Per-event suites are the future of our their accolades and the first look at the 4th Annual SEAT-IT business. Conference and Tradeshow. FEATURES 54 GROW YOUR SUITE SALES DURING THE 25 INTRODUCING THE NEW LEADER OF THE PACK RECESSION The ALSD has passed the torch to a new President, new Sales Alert! A new economy brings new prospects for premium Board of Directors members, and a new Executive Director. sales professionals. Find out who you are not targeting… and Meet the next generation of the Premium Seat Industry. should be. 30 COMING OF THE NEXT AGE TCU is reinventing its football home, Amon G. Carter Stadium, by renovating over one-half of the facility. The premium age (and a BCS bowl) will be the next golden age for TCU football About the Cover: The first generation of premium seating has brought us many options and strategies. Start the next 20 years with fresh ideas and fans. new solutions, such as the Theater Boxes at the United Center in Chicago. 7 S E A T 1-12.indd 7 12/15/09 5:40 PM
  8. 8. ASSociATioN oF Luxury SuiTE DirEcTorS New ALSD Members Chairman of the Board Bill Dorsey Executive Director Amanda (Kuntz) Verhoff President Jennifer Ark, Green Bay Packers VP, Business Development Pat McCaffrey Chris Costanzo Doug Oswald Director, Sponsor and Partnership Development Dene Shiels Manager of Premium Seating Market Manager Director of Finance Dan Lindeman Buffalo Bills Architectural Environments one Bills Drive American Seating Company Financial Account Manager Vickie Henke orchard Park, NY 14127 401 American Seating Center Director of Information Technology Sean Kellner P: 716-312-8621 Grand Rapids, MI 49504 F: 716-312-8603 P: 616-732-6416 Editor of SEAT, Website Director Jared Frank chris.costanzo@bills.nfl.net F: 616-732-6847 Account Executive Scott Hinzman doug.oswald@amseco.com P.J. Danhoff Design Carole Winters Art + Design Suite Sales Account Executive Deb McDermott Detroit Lions / Ford Field Director of Marketing ExECUTIVE CoMMITTEE 2000 Brush St., Suite 200 American Seating Company Chris Bigelow, Bigelow Companies Detroit, MI 48226 401 American Seating Center Brian Bucciarelli, Hershey Entertainment & Resorts P: 313-262-2362 Grand Rapids, MI 49504 Greg Hanrahan, United Center F: 313-262-2283 deb.mcdermott@amseco.com Tom Kaucic, Southern Wine & Spirits pdanhoff@detroitlions.com Pat McCaffrey, ALSD Sabina D’Ascoli Jamie Norman, Dallas Stars Melanie Kermin Manager, Luxury Suite Services Kim Reckley, Detroit Red Wings & olympia Entertainment Suite Services Manager Arena des Canadiens Inc. Seattle Seahawks 1275 St. Antoine St., 3rd Floor BoARD oF DIRECToRS 800 occidental Avenue S., #200 Montreal, Quebec H3C 5L2 Pam Benoist, St. Louis Rams Seattle, WA 98134 Canada Janie Boles, Auburn University P: 425-203-8127 P: 514-925-5643 Natalie Burbank, Utah Jazz / Salt Lake Bees Trent Dutry, US Airways Center F: 425-203-8129 sdascoli@canadiens.com Chris Granger, National Basketball Association melaniek@seahawks.com Patti Kimbrough, University of Arkansas Greg Brevik Tara Mickelson Pacific Northern Inc. Gerald Kissel, Ball State University Premium Services Coordinator 3116 Belmeade Dr. Phil MacDougall, Sacramento Kings/ARCo Arena Debbie Massa, RoI Consulting Arizona Cardinals Football Club Carrollton, Tx 75006 Mike Ondrejko, Madison Square Garden 8701 S. Hardy Drive brevikg@pacificnorthern.com Richard Searls, New York Red Bulls Tempe, AZ 85284 Tom Sheridan, Chicago White Sox Tosha Daniels P: 602-379-1691 Michael Smith, Philadelphia Union Account Specialist F: 602-379-1772 Peter Titlebaum, University of Dayton Pacific Northern Inc. Brian Varnadoe, Houston Texans tmickelson@cardinals.nfl.net 3116 Belmeade Dr. Jon Vingas, Centerplate Ron Campbell Carrollton, Tx 75006 Bob White, Calgary Flames Senior Director, Ticket Sales P: 972-512-9075 Arizona Cardinals Football Club danielst@pacificnorthern.com SEAT IT Board 8701 S. Hardy Drive Christine Stoffel, S5 Enterprises / SEAT Consortium Michael Smith Chris Wood, APS Tempe, AZ 85284 Manager, Suites & Premium Seating P: 602-379-1721 Philadelphia Union ALSD 2010 Conference Committee F: 602-379-1772 2501 Seaport Dr., Switch House Suite Richard Dobransky, DNC Sportservice rcampbell@cardinals.nfl.net Chris Gallagher, New York Yankees 500 Jennifer Hutchinson Chester, PA 19013 Pat Jones, New York Mets Corporate Partnership Manager P: 610-497-8936 Jon Muscalo, Legends Hospitality Michigan International Speedway F: 610-497-3309 Richard Searls, New York Red Bulls Rob Sullivan, New York Jets 12626 US 12 msmith@philadelphiaunion.com Anne Wheat, New Meadowlands Stadium Company Brooklyn, MI 49230 Susan Koschalk P: 517-592-1214 SEAT IT Division Steering Committee Caterease Software F: 517-592-3848 Christine Stoffel, Committee Chairman 1020 Goodlette Rd. North jhutchinson@mispeedway.com Chris Wood, Committee Co-Chairman Naples, FL 34102 Chris Dill, Portland Trail Blazers Josh Burgett P: 239-261-5828 Sasha Puric, Toronto Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment Director of Corporate Partnerships F: 239-263-4164 Mike Morris, Major League Baseball Michigan International Speedway susan@caterease.com Lorraine Spadaro, TD Banknorth Garden 12626 US 12 Wayne Wichlacz, Green Bay Packers Ashley Bobbett Casey Bookout, University of oklahoma Brooklyn, MI 49230 Suite Catering Manager Jim Darrow, Illitch Holdings, Inc. P: 517-592-1236 ARAMARK at Reliant Park Tod Caflisch, New orleans Hornets F: 517-592-3848 8701 Kirby Dr. Brett Michalak, Tickets.com jburgett@mispeedway.com Houston, Tx 77054 John Pollard, IdentityMine P: 832-667-2507 John Gallant, IDG Enterprise bobbett-ashley@aramark.com Published by Venue Pub. Inc. Copyright 2009. (All rights reserved). SEAT is a registered trademark of the Association of Luxury Suite Directors. SEAT is published quarterly and is complimentary to all members of the Association of Luxury Suite Directors. 10017 McKelvey Road, Cincinnati, oH 45231 • 513 674 0555 • amanda@alsd.com 8 S E A T 1-12.indd 8 12/15/09 5:40 PM
  9. 9. S E AT 17 1-12.indd 9 12/15/09 5:40 PM Buyers Guide fall 09.indd 17 9/28/2009 9:06:37 AM
  10. 10. New ALSD Members Tom Olson Marie Patten Anne Wheat Scott Murray General Manager Manager, Premium Seating Director of Guest Services Director of Ticket Sales and Customer Delaware North Sportservice at Miller Development New Meadowlands Stadium Company Service Park Cleveland Indians 102 Route 120 Edmonton oilers Hockey Club one Brewers Way Progressive Field East Rutherford, NJ 07073 11230 110th Street Milwaukee, WI 53214 2401 ontario Street P: 201-765-9874 Edmonton, AB T5G 3H7 P: 414-902-4400 Cleveland, oH 44115-4003 F: 201-240-0681 Canada F: 414-902-4717 P: 216-420-4487 awheat@nmstadco.com smurray@edmontonoilers.com tolson@dncinc.com mpatten@indians.com Rob Louthain Jason Potter Denise Branken Jeff Wallace Senior Manager of Premium Sales Account Executive, Suite Sales ARAMARK at Corel Centre Premium Seating Account Executive Chicago White Sox Houston Texans 1000 Palladium Dr., Box 109 Cleveland Indians U.S. Cellular Field Two Reliant Park Kanata, oN K2V 1A4 Progressive Field 333 W. 35th St. Houston, Tx 77054 Canada 2401 ontario Street Chicago, IL 60616 P: 832-667-2064 F: 613-599-8288 Cleveland, oH 44115-4003 P: 312-674-5355 F: 832-667-2186 branken-denise@aramark.com P: 216-420-4487 rlouthain@chisox.com jpotter@houstontexans.com jwallace@indians.com John Heberden Sam Lawson Jake Vernon ARAMARK at HP Pavilion at San Jose Andy Murphy Manager of Corporate Development Manager / Pacers Sales 525 W. Santa Clara St. Director of Premium Seating Sales and Ticket Sales Indiana Pacers / Conseco Fieldhouse San Jose, CA 95113 Philips Arena / Atlanta Spirit Chicago White Sox one Conseco Court P: 408-999-5735 101 Marietta St., Suite 1900 U.S. Cellular Field 125 S. Pennsylvania St. F: 408-999-5814 Atlanta, GA 30303 333 W. 35th St. Indianapolis, IN 46204 jheberden@svse.net P: 404-878-3088 Chicago, IL 60616 P: 317-917-2895 F: 404-878-3555 slawson@chisox.com F: 317-917-2599 Sierra Beshears andrew.murphy@atlantaspirit.com jvernon@pacers.com Centerplate at Raley Field Jen Wu Sacramento River Cats Steve Poremba Luxury Suite Liaison, Stadium Food & Theresa Smith 400 Ballpark Dr. Director of Marketing Beverage Senior Sales Executive, Premium W. Sacramento, CA 95691 Wachovia Arena at Casey Plaza Carolina Panthers Seats and Suites P: 916-376-4945 255 Highland Park Blvd. 800 S. Mint Street Jacksonville Jaguars, Ltd. sierra.beshears@centerplate.com Wilkes-Barre, PA 18702 Charlotte, NC 28202 one ALLTEL Stadium Place P: 570-970-7600 ext. 1107 P: 704-358-7135 Jacksonville, FL 32202 Ryan Spillers F: 570-970-7601 F: 704-358-7131 P: 904-633-5274 Marketing Manager porembas@wachoviaarena.com jennifer.wu@panthers.nfl.com F: 904-633-6338 Honda Center / Anaheim Ducks smitht@jaguars.nfl.com 2695 E. Katella Brent Stehlik Christine Slomberg Anaheim, CA 92806 Vice President, Ticket Sales, Services Senior Manager of Suite Services Bryan Lawrence P: 714-704-2547 and operations Cleveland Cavaliers Premium Sales & Services rspillers@anaheimducks.com Arizona Diamondbacks 1 Center Court Representative Po Box 2095 Cleveland, oH 44115 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim C’Nea Hatches Phoenix, AZ 85001 P: 216-420-2102 2000 Gene Autry Way Suite Sales Executive P: 602-462-4101 F: 216-420-2121 Anaheim, CA 92806 Houston Rockets F: 602-462-4141 cslomberg@cavs.com P: 714-940-2094 1510 Polk Street bstehlik@dbacks.com F: 714-940-2206 Houston, Tx 77002 Fred Graf bryan.lawrence@angelsbb.com P: 713-758-7446 Jeremy Walls Manager Suites and Party Facilities F: 713-758-7391 Director, Group Suite and Inside Sales Colorado Rockies Baseball Club Michael Miller Cneah@rocketball.com Arizona Diamondbacks Coors Field Suite Sales & Services Coordinator Po Box 2095 2001 Blake Street Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment Tia Norman Phoenix, AZ 85001 Denver, Co 80205-2000 40 Bay Street, Suite 400 Manager of Suite Sales P: 602-462-6500 graff@coloradorockies.com Toronto, oN M4J 2x2 Houston Rockets F: 602-462-4141 Canada 1510 Polk Street Chad Robertson jwalls@dbacks.com P: 416-263-3902 Houston, Tx 77002 Manager Premium Seating F: 416-359-9095 P: 713-758-7245 Rachel Belack Denver Broncos Football Club mmiller@mapleleafsports.com F: 713-758-7391 Premium Services, Suite Coordinator 1701 Bryant St., Suite 100 tian@rocketball.com Chicago Fire Soccer Club Denver, Co 80204-1752 Ana Aviles 7000 South Harlem Ave. chad.robertson@broncos.nfl.net Premium Services Account Manager Gladiann Lugo Bridgeview, IL 60455 Miami HEAT Guest Services Manager Chris Gallagher P: 708-496-6752 601 Biscayne Blvd. Coliseo de Puerto Rico – SMG Executive Director, Premium Sales rbelack@chicago-fire.com Miami, FL 33132 Po Box 195385 and Services P: 786-777-4229 San Juan, PR 00919-5385 Adam Thompson New York Yankees F: 305-533-6689 P: 787-777-0800 Senior Account Manager, Premium Yankee Stadium aaviles@heat.com F: 787-221-1835 Services one East 161st Street glugo@smgpr.com Charlotte Bobcats / Bobcats Sports Bronx, NY 10451 and Entertainment P: 646-977-8205 333 E. Trade St. cgallagher@yankees.com Charlotte, NC 28202 P: 704-688-8799 F: 704-688-8724 athompson@bobcats.com 10 S E A T 1-12.indd 10 12/15/09 5:40 PM
  11. 11. Perlick is proud to be the FIRST company certified by the ALSD. S E AT 19 ALSD0609_4.indd 1 6/10/09 11:24:07 AM Buyers Guide fall 09.indd 19 1-12.indd 11 9/28/2009 9:06:37 AM 12/15/09 5:40 PM
  12. 12. New ALSD Members Jed Justman Missy Pender George Murphy Adam Cooley Manager, Suite Sales Manager of Suite Sales and Service Manager of Ticket Sales Account Manager, Premium Sales Milwaukee Brewers Baseball Club New orleans Saints Pittsburgh Penguins Washington Nationals one Brewers Way 5800 Airline Dr. 1 Chatham Center, Suite 400 1500 S. Capitol St. SE Miller Park Metairie, LA 70003 Pittsburgh, PA 15219 Washington, DC 20003 Milwaukee, WI 53214 P: 504-731-1885 P: 412-642-1338 adam.cooley@nationals.com P: 414-902-4553 F: 504-529-9380 gmurphy@pittsburghpenguins.com Jeff Bass F: 414-902-4056 missy.pender@saints.nfl.com Bryan Betzler Stadium Management jed.justman@milwaukeebrewers.com Mark Shearer Premium Seating Account Executive Arizona State University Shaunna Richardson Senior Director, Ticket Sales & Pittsburgh Pirates Po Box 872505, Stadium Director – Suite Services operations 115 Federal Street Management Milwaukee Brewers Baseball Club oakland Raiders Pittsburgh, PA 15212 Tempe, AZ 85287-2505 one Brewers Way 1220 Harbor Bay Pkwy. bryan.betzler@pirates.com P: 480-965-4047 Miller Park Alameda, CA 94502 j.bass@asu.edu Juan David Londono Milwaukee, WI 53214 P: 510-864-5000 Account Manager, Premium Sales Kate MacDonald shaunna.richardson@ F: 510-864-5134 Pittsburgh Pirates Assistant Director, Athletic Suite milwaukeebrewers.com mshearer@raiders.com 115 Federal Street operations and Donor Relations Samantha DeMarino Shona Lauritano Pittsburgh, PA 15212 Boston College Manager – Suite Services Senior Manager of Luxury Suite P: 412-325-4936 Conte Forum Milwaukee Brewers Baseball Club Services F: 412-325-4947 Chestnut Hill, MA 02467 one Brewers Way oakland Raiders juan.londono@pittsburghpirates.com P: 617-552-6824 Miller Park 1220 Harbor Bay Pkwy. macdonkg@bc.edu Rocky Koplik Milwaukee, WI 53214 Alameda, CA 94502 Director of Premium Seating Services Linda Couvion P: 414-902-4631 P: 510-864-5000 San Francisco Giants Director of Premium Seating F: 414-902-4056 F: 510-864-5134 24 Willie Mays Plaza University of Dayton samantha.demarino@ slauritano@raiders.com San Francisco, CA 94107 University of Dayton Arena milwaukeebrewers.com Betsy Shoustal P: 415-972-2266 Po Box 8806 John Winborn operations Coordinator, Premium F: 415-947-2500 Dayton, oH 45401-8806 Vice President of Technology Services rkoplik@sfgiants.com P: 937-229-4868 Milwaukee Brewers Baseball Club Philadelphia Eagles F: 937-449-2889 Casey Conroy one Brewers Way Nova Care Complex linda.couvion@notes.udayton.edu Luxury Suite/Business Center Miller Park one Nova Care Way Coordinator Chris Zaber Milwaukee, WI 53214 Philadelphia, PA 19102 San Francisco Giants Senior Director, Ticket Sales & Service john.winborn@milwaukeebrewers.com P: 267-570-9211 24 Willie Mays Plaza Pittsburgh Pirates F: 267-570-4040 John Avenson San Francisco, CA 94107 115 Federal Street bshoustal@eagles.nfl.com Vice President of Technology P: 415-972-2046 Pittsburgh, PA 15212 Minnesota Twins Olivia Ritchie F: 415-947-2500 P: 412-325-4714 34 Kirby Puckett Place operations Coordinator, Premium cconroy@sfgiants.com F: 412-325-4410 Minneapolis, MN 55415 Services chris.zaber@pirates.com Candice Keener P: 612-375-7465 Philadelphia Eagles Luxury Suite Account Manager Terri Smith F: 612-375-7480 Nova Care Complex San Francisco Giants Director, Suite Sales & Service johnavenson@twinsbaseball.com one Nova Care Way 24 Willie Mays Plaza Pittsburgh Pirates Philadelphia, PA 19102 Matt Quinn San Francisco, CA 94107 115 Federal Street P: 267-570-4036 Corporate Sales P: 415-972-2048 Pittsburgh, PA 15212 F: 267-570-4040 New England Patriots F: 415-947-2500 P: 412-325-4673 oritchie@eagles.nfl.com Gillette Stadium ckeener@sfgiants.com F: 412-325-4410 one Patriot Place Joe Malatesta terri.smith@pirates.com Brent Miller Foxborough, MA 02035-1388 Account Executive, Premium Sales Director of Guest Services Matthew Grossman mattq@patriots.com Philadelphia Eagles Seattle Mariners President & CEo Nova Care Complex David Pearlstein 1250 1st Ave. South idegy, inc. one Nova Care Way VP of Business Development Seattle, WA 98134 3990 Business Park Drive Philadelphia, PA 19102 New England Patriots P: 206-346-4413 Columbus, oH 43204 P: 267-320-5854 Gillette Stadium F: 206-346-4250 P: 614-545-5000 jmalatesta@eagles.nfl.com one Patriot Place bmiller@seattlemariners.com F: 614-545-4000 Foxborough, MA 02035-1388 matthew@idegy.com Kim Jackson davidp@patriots.com Jess Winemiller Senior Director of Client Services, Natasha Moody Benefits Coordinator, Premium Verizon Center Client Services Manager Services Verizon Center New orleans Hornets Philadelphia Eagles 601 F St. NW 1250 Poydras St., 19th Floor Nova Care Complex Washington, DC 20004 New orleans, LA 70113 one Nova Care Way kjackson@washsports.com P: 504-593-4755 Philadelphia, PA 19102 F: 866-441-6286 P: 267-320-5858 natasha.moody@hornets.com F: 267-570-4040 jwinemiller@eagles.nfl.com 12 S E A T 1-12.indd 12 12/15/09 5:40 PM
  13. 13. FAll0913-19finalpdf.indd 13 12/15/09 5:41 PM
  14. 14. 14 S E A T FAll0913-19finalpdf.indd 14 12/15/09 5:41 PM Buyers G
  15. 15. MOTOA4™ Mission Critical Portfolio THE INCIDENT NEEDS YOUR FOCUS. THE TECHNOLOGY SHOULDN’T In an emergency, multi-agency coordination isn’t a luxury — it is a necessity. And Motorola makes this necessity a reality. Our interoperable data and voice solutions empower response teams with real-time information to make better decisions. For example, our evacuee tracking application enables responders to better assist and track individuals throughout the evacuation process. When responders and command staff have the tools to prepare and respond to emergency situations, recovery operations are more effective, helping government and citizens get back to normal quicker. It’s no wonder our interoperable networks have been implemented more often than all other manufacturers combined. It’s just another way Motorola enables you to focus on your mission, not the technology. HELLOMOTO™ Learn more about Motorola solutions for your mission critical communication needs at motorola.com/secondnature MOTOROLA and the Stylized M Logo are registered in the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. All other product or service names are the property of their respective owners. © Motorola, Inc. 2009. All rights reserved. 66 FAll0913-19finalpdf.indd 15 Buyers Guide fall 09.indd 51 9/28/2009 9:07:47PM 12/15/09 5:41 AM
  16. 16. Industry and Association News Ohio University Research: What is premium seating and who sells it? By: Amanda Hauge, Jim DiLella, & Heather Lawrence, Ohio University A recent study conducted by The Ohio University Center for Sports • The majority of the remaining sales and service staff communi- Administration aimed to establish a working definition for the label cate regularly and work closely throughout the process of servic- premium seating, as well as determine what organizational structures ing accounts and suite renewals (55% and 65%). were in place to support the sales of this inventory. The research • Only 15% of respondents that are not fully integrated in sales team conducted the survey between February and March of 2009 and service reported that the two areas communicate at a high by sending an email to over 300 members of the ALSD that work in level on the prospecting of new premium seating sales. one of the four major professional sports. The formal objectives of the study were to: Key Findings • Identify a standard for the term premium seating. In terms of establishing a working definition of premium seating, • Determine industry norms overall and by type of venue for pre- teams and organizations are largely considering premium seating to mium seating department size in terms of number of staff. be limited to luxury suites and assigned club seating. Very few offer • Understand the job functions of each staff member by position. courtside seating or hospitality lounges as a part of this inventory. • Analyze the level of interaction between premium seating sales When developing or reorganizing a premium seating sales de- professionals and premium seating client services representa- partment, the average number of staff for single-purpose anchor tives. tenants in MLB, NFL, NHL and NBA venues is between five and six employees, with three to four members devoted to sales and two to Highlights from the study servicing these accounts. For multi-purpose facilities serving both • The 47 respondents represented all venue types with 23.4% NHL and NBA anchor tenants, the number of employees in the pre- MLB Anchor Tenants, 23.5% NFL Anchor Tenants, 25.5% Single- mium seating department doubles, with an average of 11.3. Very few purpose NHL or NBA arenas, and 25.5% Multi-purpose NHL and organizations have anyone serving a dual role in the capacities of NBA arenas participating. both sales and service. • The majority of respondents (79.5%) were in decision making Vice Presidents and Directors of Premium Seating are not very roles as either Vice President or Director of Premium Seating. involved with personally servicing premium seating clients. While this • Teams are overwhelmingly classifying premium seating as luxury may not be surprising because these individuals often have many suites (100%) and club seating (75.6%), while only 22.2% and responsibilities in managing their staff, it would be interesting to see 33.3% consider courtside seats or hospitality lounges as premi- if an increase of personal involvement on their part would lead to an um areas respectively. increase in sales or renewals. • The bulk of premium seating sales and service staffs are em- While premium seating sales staffs are often the main point of ployed by the team or organization (76.7%) while 14% are em- contact for clients and most in tune to these customers’ needs, a large ployed by the venue or arena management company itself. majority (75%) are not involved in the creation and implementation • The average full-time staff for a premium seating department var- of sales related collateral material. This may be another area to in- ies slightly by venue. Ranges are as follows: crease synergy across the marketing and premium seating depart- • MLB Anchor Tenant - 5.2 employees ments. In addition, only 15% of sales and service staffs communicate • NFL Anchor Tenant - 6 employees at a high level when prospecting new sales. • Single-purpose Arena for NHL or NBA - 5.4 employees • Multi-purpose Arena for NHL and NBA - 11.3 employees Recommendations • Overall, the majority of teams have one to three employees de- • Premium Seating Departments may want to integrate courtside/ voted specifically to sales, with two employees devoted specifi- floor level seating as additional inventory to boost high ticket cally to servicing these accounts. Responses of “O” or “1” were sales packages. While this is not currently thought of as premium most common when indicating how many individuals perform the seating, the pricing and exclusiveness of these areas make it a dual role of sales and servicing. strong up-sell to club seat or luxury suite clients on a game by • Of the many roles that a Vice President or Director of Premium game basis. Seating plays, providing customer service and stewardship of • Those in leadership positions should work to increase the premium seat holders is the task they are least likely to be re- amount of personal involvement they give their premium seating sponsible for. clients. This could lead to greater client loyalty and higher reten- • Of the many responsibilities a Premium Seating Sales Execu- tion rates. tive has, 100% of respondents had a role in selling the brands, • Sales staffs should be involved in the creation and implemen- products, and services of the organization and cultivating new tation of sales related collateral material, as they are the staff business for suites and premium seating. 75% are responsible members who are most closely communicating with the end for conducting heavy face-to-face appointment campaigns to user/target markets. meet with potential buyers. However, 75% of respondents also • For those teams where sales and service are separate, the two noted that these individuals are not involved with the creation areas should work to increase communication when addressing and implementation of sales related collateral material. the task of prospecting for new clients. This would be mutually • Overall, 36% of respondents have their sales and service staff beneficial for both positions as service staff may be able to lever- integrated with all staff performing the dual role of sales and ser- age their continued relationships with current clients to produce vice. For those that do not have integrated departments, the fol- new referrals for the sales department. lowing was found: 16 S E A T FAll0913-19finalpdf.indd 16 12/15/09 5:41 PM AGI 1355
  17. 17. While your team is winning the game, Agilysys helps you win the crowd. Wants a beer but doesn’t want to miss the action. Use mobile POS to pre-order and bust the queue. Halftime starting in four minutes and stadium network has just crashed. Still serve three times as many customers off-line with easy-to-use POS. Pre-ordered four vegetarian plates for luxury suite. Automatically adjust catering inventory. Agilysys solutions provide you with total control of your retail and food & beverage operations—so you can simplify management and improve revenue stadium-wide. Provide faster, more accurate service in luxury suites and club sections with mobile POS devices. Speed up concession lines and increase sales volumes with easy-to-use POS terminals. Maintain accurate inventory of every concession, bar, restaurant, caterer and fan shop—in real time— during your events. And improve planning with in-depth analytics and superior reporting capabilities. It’s everything you need to simplify operations and boost your bottom line—only from Agilysys. Find out what Agilysys can do for you. Call 1-877-374-4783 or email hsgsales@agilysys.com | www.agilysys.com Agilysys solutions include: FAll0913-19finalpdf.indd 17 12/15/09 5:41 PM AGI 13557 SM_8.75x11.25_4C_STAD.indd 1 11/10/2009 10:25:26 AM
  18. 18. Industry and Association News MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL improved arena views; the new Budweiser Lounge, which occupies the space previously held by the Royal Room; and new flat screen Yankees prosper in 2009 televisions and furniture in all suites, as well as upgraded ticket scan- After a rough start when the New York Yankees had to cut prices for ners outside suite doors. premium seats in their brand new stadium, the team ended up enjoy- ing a flourishing year on the field and at the gate. Besides winning NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE the franchise’s 27th World Championship, the team is projected to Jets cut premium prices for new stadium increase revenues to between $450 million and $500 million- up from The New York Jets are reducing prices, in some cases by 50 per- $375 million last year. Contributing to the increased revenues is their cent, for approximately 7,000 seats in the Mezzanine Club at the new MLB leading 3.72 million home gate attendance and $72.97 average Meadowlands Stadium. As Matt Higgins, the team’s Executive Vice ticket price (according to Team Marketing Report; figure accounts for President of Business Operations told The Associated Press, “We general tickets, not premium). And if the economy continues to re- came to the conclusion that these prices are really 2007 prices in a bound, corporate buyers should begin to occupy more frequently the 2009 world.” Seventy percent of the Jets’ non-premium seats have $500-$2,500 premium seats in 2010 that at times sat vacant this past been sold, and there are no plans currently to adjust the personal season. This is good news considering the team posted a $3.7 million seat license (PSL) prices in the new stadium. The Giants, who will operating loss in 2008 coupled with a payroll in excess of $200 million share the stadium with the Jets, have no plans to further reduce any this season. of their ticket pricing. Giants price seats based on demand The San Francisco Giants are instituting what they are calling “dy- MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCER namic pricing” for select single game ticket sales next season. Prices Inaugural season for the Sounders FC in MLS a for these seats are not locked, but can fluctuate based on the demand success for the game. Factors that may affect demand include popularity of a The Seattle Sounders FC set an MLS record for highest average at- given game, weather, a possible milestone, or a player from a visiting tendance per game at 30,943 this season, their first in the league. team who brings extra interest. It is even possible for ticket prices to The Sounders FC attendance numbers landed them a spot in the 50 move on game day. The new approach means fans could pay twice best-supported clubs in the world, the first MLS team to crack the top as much for a Tuesday night game in April against the Pittsburgh 50, according to World Soccer Magazine. Pirates than for a weekend game in August against the rival Los Angeles Dodgers. COLLEGE NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION IMG and Legends join forces IMG Worldwide and Legends Hospitality Management, LLC have an- Average ticket price drops for NBA nounced the formation of a 50/50 joint venture, named IMG-Legends, Largely blamed on a floundering economy, for the first time in eight to provide premium seat licensing (PSL), suite, and ticket sales ser- seasons, average ticket prices have dropped for the NBA. This year’s vices to the college market. The joint venture aims to capitalize on average price, which has decreased to $48.90, down 2.8% from last the PSL experience of Legends, which is owned by the New York year, represents the largest decline in the league’s history. Fourteen Yankees, Dallas Cowboys, Goldman Sachs, and CIC Partners, and teams have cut ticket prices, while thirteen remain flat. The NBA IMG’s extensive college network to assist university athletic depart- Champion Los Angeles Lakers lead the way with an average ticket of ments with increasing their premium seat sales. $93.25. The least expensive seats are found in Memphis, where the average ticket for a Grizzlies game is $24.10. The other three major University of Houston looks into new stadium North American leagues saw average ticket prices increase in 2009, The University of Houston is set to undergo two separate feasibility albeit by modest amounts. studies for six different plans involving the renovation or reconstruc- Average Ticket Prices Breakdown*: tion of Robertson Stadium and Hofheinz Pavilion. The plans range NFL: $74.99 from renovating Robertson Stadium and Hofheinz Pavilion to building NHL: $51.27 a new stadium on one of three different sites to combining a football NBA: $48.90 stadium and basketball arena in a joint venture. The proposed plans MLB: $26.64 include new club seating, suites, and loge boxes at Robertson, and *From Team Marketing Report luxury suites, floor suites, and a loge box in Hofheinz. NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION/ MOTORSPORTS Major renovations upcoming for Talladega NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE Superspeedway $20 million renovation for STAPLES Center Work has begun on a two-phase, $13 million renovation to more than As it celebrates its 10th Anniversary, the STAPLES Center in Los half of Talladega Superspeedway’s grandstand. Phase One will be Angeles, home of the NBA’s Lakers and Clippers and NHL’s Kings, completed by the Aaron’s 499 on April 25, 2010, and the balance underwent a $20 million renovation this summer. Included in the reno- of the project will come online by the AMP Energy 500 on October vation is the experimental Hyde Lounge, a nightclub inside the sports 31, 2010. Phase One will bring new 21-inch seats with armrests and arena. Eight suites were removed to install the 4,000 square foot, cupholders to the Gadsden grandstands in Turn Four through section 175-seat nightlife space, which is available to suite and courtside seat C of the OV Hill South grandstands in the tri-oval. Seat aisles will holders. Other changes include a redesign of the San Manuel Club, also be widened to 48 inches.Grandstand renovations also include which now has an increased capacity of 445 and new glass walls for the building of new premium level seats and additional ADA seating. # 18 S E A T FAll0913-19finalpdf.indd 18 12/15/09 5:41 PM
  19. 19. Design creates culture. tell your story loewensteininc.com | 800.327.2548 | a division of FAll0913-19finalpdf.indd 19 12/15/09 5:41 PM
  20. 20. An Idea Whose Time Has Come 1988 The birth of the Big Idea, the idea that spawned the $10 billion pre- mium seat marketplace, began in 1988. “Necessity was the mother of this invention,” says Tom Wilson, President of The Palace of Auburn Hills, the once and future home of the Detroit Pistons. “I think it was safe to say that we looked at a cost of $60 million (which turned out to be $90 million) and it was going to be privately funded,” continues Wilson about the construction of The Palace. “It had to be built to pay A look at where we were; for itself, if not make money.” According to Wilson, the key to doing this was the construction and where we are going of suites – more than 100 of them only 24 rows from courtside – more than had ever been built before. “And we had to lease them for dollars previously unheard of.” The original suite marketplace was created with It was an entirely new venue model, and at the time, it was a big long-term suite leases to finance venue construc- gamble; which by the way, paid off handsomely. The Palace generated $15 million in suite revenue that first year, an enormous sum in those tion. Twenty years later, nearly every professional days before a premium seat marketplace even existed or Alex Rodriguez team has built a new venue. Long-term leases, had entered high school. And its success spawned two decades of new venue construction. except for new venues, are basically a thing of a To some extent, once The Palace proved a successful new venue bygone era. Will the next 20 years be the age of the model, what followed was inevitable, a fait accompli. Owners of all the other teams almost had to build out to keep up with the Jerry Joneses per-event suite? It appears that could be the case. of the world. Staying competitive required that teams build out as soon as possible. Not that this was a hard choice. Fans clamored for the new buildings and were willing to pay with their pocketbooks: Stadium ref- By Bill Dorsey erendums usually passed. If not, teams often threatened to leave (and Chairman of the Board some did because there was usually a city so enamored by professional sports, they would do almost anything to get a franchise to relocate). Association of Luxury Suite Directors The greenmail worked. And for the last 20 years, fans have not stopped clamoring as each venue built claims to be the latest, greatest, state-of- the-art edifice on the face of the planet. “I told anyone who would listen that I sold LSD for a living. It was easier than explaining what I actually did. Believe me, no one understood.” The premium seat marketplace truly created what some have called a “revenue race” for venue construction. Build a better mouse- trap; raise more revenue; pay Alex Rodriguez (who had graduated from high school by now) more money; win more games; keep fans and own- ers happy. It also literally created thousands of jobs for those whose fate it was to be part of the emerging marketplace. It changed the landscape of professional sports forever. I was one of those whose life became inextricably tied to this Birthplace of an Industry: A bunker suite at The Palace of Auburn Hills new sports revenue generating idea. Mr. Holland had his opus; I had my premium seat marketplace. I was at the beginning stage of what is now called the Premium Seat Industry, now a $10 billion business, then barely a blip on the radar screen. 20 S E A T Fall0919_24.indd 20 12/15/09 10:41 PM
  21. 21. SuiteAgent at a Glance “The premium seat market was not a business; it was SuiteAgent was founded upon one vision: help teams and more like a celebrity showcase. I thought I had died venues nationwide fill their event suites. Nearly every team has been affected by the global financial crisis, and more suites than and gone to Victoria’s Secret.” ever before are available for sale on a per-game basis. However, teams can only dedicate a small percentage of their scarce re- sources to selling per-event suites; after all, teams are primarily focused on selling tickets and signing long-term contracts for pre- Yet that blip was just enough to create a small revenue stream on mium seats and suites. which I built a small business with the funny name: the Association Enter SuiteAgent. By aggregating the per-event suite in- of Luxury Suite Directors. Yes, it was called the ALSD and yes, I told ventory of teams across leagues and geographies, SuiteAgent anyone who would listen that I sold LSD for a living. It was easier than can more effectively target buyers on a national level, and com- explaining what I actually did. Believe me, no one understood, includ- municate a more compelling and clear message about the value ing my wife who stayed married to me while I risked our meager life proposition of per-event suites. savings building the business. “SuiteAgent is just one of many tools in a team’s sales and The ALSD started in 1990; we had all of 13 members. By 1992 at marketing toolkit,” according to Scott Spencer, Operating Manager our 3rd annual conference at the brand new state-of-the-art Target Cen- of SuiteAgent. “However, we’re an important tool in that our goal ter in Minneapolis, nearly 100 people showed up for the worldly price is not only to bring in new per-event customers, but also to gener- of $250 per person. We had two exhibitors and one sponsor. Without ate new long-term leaseholders for the teams we work with.” Levy Restaurants, who had their own ideas about building a suite cater- ing empire in this new upscale venue marketplace, we would not have The Key Details SuiteAgent’s business model has been designed to minimize risk survived. for the teams. Teams decide which inventory to showcase on the Levy took care of us and made us seem much larger than we really SuiteAgent website, and at what price to sell that inventory. There were. They threw lavish parties to demonstrate their catering abilities is no up-front cost to list inventory; SuiteAgent makes a commis- that they learned as upscale Chicago restraunteurs who had just landed sion if the suite sells. Most importantly, SuiteAgent will share all the Chicago White Sox account and were looking to expand. For a customer data with the teams so they can build relationships in an while at least, I did not put on a conference as much as I did throw a effort to up-sell those customers to a long-term lease. party. Some people today say nothing has changed. No matter: I was SuiteAgent can be found online at www.suiteagent.com. glad people enjoyed the experience. For more information contact Scott Spencer at scott.spencer@ In those days, the attendees – how should I say this without suiteagent.com. sounding sexist – were beautiful. Suite directors, at least the women, were hired like stewardesses in the 1950’s. “It sure is a handsome crowd,” I remember hearing Chris Bigelow tell me. “Yeah, I’m the ugliest one in the room,” I told Chris. “Not that I’m complaining.” It was very much of a celebrity lifestyle in 1990. First suite direc- tor I ever met? It was at the old Spectrum in Philly. I walked through the door to be greeted by Julius Irving. The Dr. was in. He sold suites. To this day, I believe he is the only suite director we have had who can dunk. But that was the way it was in the beginning: the premium seat market was not a business; it was more like a celebrity showcase. I thought I had died and gone to Victoria’s Secret. “I realized that suites were leased because they created what is now called Contractually Obligated Income (COI), and that suites were the underpinning of venue financing and construction.” “The idea of something, of anything, can be powerful. It is the idea of something that drives 1991 entrepreneurship, of what motivates action, of what starts wars, and creates peace. Mostly though, The creation of the Association of Luxury Suite Directors was really born out of necessity also. In 1991, I was the editor of a magazine origi- the idea of something is how many of us nally named The Business of Sports. I was having trouble targeting my circulation and decided, in one monumental moment, to change the lead our lives.” name of the magazine to Skybox, based on this new fangled home of the rich and famous. To have my magazine placed in skyboxes required I form a relationship with not only the teams, but these new celebrity S E A T 21 Fall0919_24.indd 21 12/15/09 10:41 PM
  22. 22. 2000 employees hired to operate, sell, and lease the skyboxes. I’m not even sure if they officially had a name, but we called them “Suite Directors”. We began to call up teams, got to know the Suite Directors, and In the year 2000, I believed the market had been sufficiently built out had them place the magazines in the venues. As we became acquainted to see if my idea about a per-event marketplace actually made sense. with their world, we realized that the Suite Directors had no idea of We created a company called Skybox Access Network and found some what their jobs were; how much they should be paid; or how many of modest funding to see if the teams and the corporations would adopt them there should be. It was all uncharted territory, a brave new world. the concept. So we formed the association to distribute magazines, and quick- I briefly tested the concept by contracting with American Ex- ly the association grew because of necessity: there was a real need to press to market the fact that suites were available through Skybox Access share information. Network. Our numbers have grown to nearly 1,000 strong today, and the Timing is everything. Again, we found out that this was an idea rest as they say is “history.” Skybox magazine failed during the lockout that was not ready for prime time. While clearly we found that there and strike years of baseball and hockey in 1994, (we had nowhere to were plenty of customers out there who wanted to buy per-event suites, send the magazine because the games were not being played) but the there was one major drawback: not enough supply. Association of Luxury Suite Directors was forever. Suites were tied up at nearly 100% occupancy for long-term deals. The teams were happy; it was too much work to sell individual suites when they could easily sell long-term leases- the longer the better. “While clearly we found that there were plenty of The new venues often were built with ten-year founder leases, which were large sums of money paid up-front by corporate citizens, who saw customers out there who wanted to buy per-event the investment almost as a civic gesture. There was pride in building the suites, there was one major drawback: latest and greatest venue, and there was pride in entertaining guests in the best new suites in the world. Corporations wanted bragging rights not enough supply.” to own the best suites and were willing to pay for the privilege. To be a suite salesperson in those days was like shooting orange roughy in a Perrier-filled barrel. I began to change focus. I was not an editor of a national magazine All of this was great for the premium seat marketplace. But not so anymore, but the executive director of an emerging new marketplace. great if you believed there should be a legitimate per-event marketplace. And I saw some things that perplexed me. As far back as 1991, I started No matter. The market had spoken. We scrapped the idea. to look more closely at this new marketplace which did not really have a name and was so small, hardly anyone in sports business even acknowl- edged its existence.“Why are suites leased?” I asked Carole Singleton, “The media to this day believes corporate suites are who was a former employee of mine before she had two kids, several a separation of the ‘haves’ and ‘have-nots’, and that houses, and multiple jobs (time flies, huh?). I asked the question be- cause even then, in 1991, I realized that suites were leased because they somehow suites are a bastardization of the created what is now called Contractually Obligated Income (COI), and game itself.” that suites were the underpinning of venue financing and construction. But on an entirely different level, the idea of suites being leased did not 2007 quite make sense. It seemed to me that because the demand was so great for suites then, and because per-event suites could be sold for more than suites Sometime in 2007, the nearly mature premium seat marketplace had prorated over the course of their lease, I always thought that someone been built out. Nearly every team, with the exception of just a few hold- someday would create a per-event suite marketplace. outs, had brand new or relatively new buildings complete with suites, It was an idea that “stuck” with me over the years. Surely, I club seats, stadium clubs, PSLs, and all the accoutrements that came thought, there could be far more customers than only those who could with this new market. afford long-term leases. There had to be hundreds or maybe thousands Demand for suites was still high, and new venues and suites were of customers who would like a suite here and there, now and then, or a still being planned. The 12,000 suites that existed in 2007 were going customer who only wanted several suites in several markets. There had to be 14,000 suites in the four major leagues by 2012. And not only to be suites controlled by major corportions on a national level that were there to be more suites, but the cost was going to go up, up, up. wanted more control over their overall marketing plans. Suites, that used to be leased for $100,000 per year, were now going for At least I certainly thought so. upwards of $500,000 in the major markets in the best locations. But, as it turned out, it was not an idea whose time had come With so much money to be made, it was only a matter of time yet. The marketplace was not yet built out; the suite salespersons were before all sports became involved: NASCAR, PGA, all the minor league too few and far between; and teams were not yet equipped to sell on a hockey and baseball teams, and the huge untapped college marketplace, per-event basis. Mainly though, teams still needed the leases to finance as well as new leagues such as Major League Soccer. The market had the buildings. mushroomed and gone nuclear. Markets kept building out with no end in sight. A city that had no suites one year suddenly had four new venues and in some cases 400 “To be a suite salesperson in those days was like to 500 suites to sell to the corporate citizens of that particular locale. Very hot suite marketplaces such as Dallas actually had nearly 1,000 shooting orange roughy in a Perrier-filled barrel.” suites. If I took one call, I took a hundred from all the media types who contacted me. Everyone called: Forbes, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, nearly every local paper, even the Village Voice. They wanted the 22 S E A T Fall0919_24.indd 22 12/15/09 10:41 PM
  23. 23. And Now a Word from Your Customers Question: If you want to know what your customers really think, looking for ways to entertain clients, but they don’t have the budget to what is th best way to find out? lease a suite or purchase premium seats. Non-headquarter locations of Answer: Talk to the man whose livelihood depends upon pleasing Fortune 2000 companies are great targets as well. those customers. That’s exactly what SEAT does Q: Some corporations claim they are not using their suites and/or tick- ets at a high enough utilization rate. Are there too many games? Have this issue. John Wallace is Prime- ticket prices become too high? Sport’s Vice President and the Gen- eral Manager of SuiteAgent and the A: A couple of thoughts- League by league, the problem is different. The NFL has high corporate utilization rates based on the 10 home games. company’s TicketOS ticket manage- On the other hand, MLB has 81 home games. Furthermore, most NBA ment platform. We asked him how and NHL venues offer the 41 home games plus extra events. This adds PrimeSport’s customers presently up to more events than a corporation can attend. Not to mention corpo- view the premium seat marketplace rations prefer to entertain clients during the week rather than weekends. during these trying economic times. I would encourage venues and teams to consider allowing corporations Wallace should know. Prime- to sell a small portion of their suites to enhance the financial relation- Sport’s TicketOS division manages ship with the team/venue. I realize this is not optimal, but I guarantee approximately 600,000 season tick- if executed properly would go a long way to building a long standing ets and suites across nearly every partnership. venue in the country. Under Wal- John Wallace, lace’s guidance, TicketOS has grown Q: How are corporations adjusting to the new economic reality many General Manager of SuiteAgent its ticket inventory software client are in? Is flat the new up? How are their budgets being squeezed? list by 500% since he took the reins A: I’m far from an economic expert, but the equation seems simple. in May of 2008. Consumers are not spending as aggressively as we once did, and this equates to change. Corporations are adjusting by not spending as ag- Wallace’s experience with gressively, finding alternative revenue opportunities, and finding custom- selling to the corporate customer is impressive. Prior to PrimeSport, ers via new media platforms. Social media has taken off, and the wave Wallace served as VP of Digital Sales for Iron Mountain where he was isn’t stopping anytime soon. If you’re not pushing the envelope to de- responsible for $150 million in annual sales. During his tenure there, velop new marketing strategies and new customer acquisition avenues Wallace grew the business to 100,000 small business customers. Cus- then you are living in the 90’s. tomers during his tenure there read like a suite salesperson’s dream list and include: Coca Cola, Bank of America, Cisco, Intel, eBay, Adobe, Q: Are there new technologies available that teams should adapt to? and Boeing. A: There are new technologies showing up every day in the ticketing The following is Wallace’s view of the premium seat business, and space. Most seem to be underwhelming, but there are a few good ones how his customers presently view the marketplace. out there. Technology should be used to help fix a problem, and this is why TicketOS and SuiteAgent were developed. TicketOS helps a cor- Q: Corporations are changing their spending habits and spending poration identify, track, report and utilize their expensive ticket assets. patterns for premium seating. If you could offer a piece of advice to SuiteAgent was developed with the team in mind so we could help move the teams, how would you position their pitches to corporations? Is dark suites to companies that can’t afford the annual commitment. there something they are not doing that you would do in reaching them properly? Q: You have a lot of major clients at PrimeSport: For example, Bank A: I recently brought together five Fortune 500 clients and asked them of America, Capital One, and Panasonic who represent nearly 400,000 one question. When was the last time a representative from a team vis- seats and suites on an annual basis. How do the truly national clients ited you at your office? One person raised their hand and claimed one position themselves differently that say, the local customer? Do they team (a Northern California team) visited their office three months ago. have different objectives? Other than that, the room was silent. I was shocked to say the least. The A: Many of the national clients think and act locally. This means national point is simple. Spend face-to-face time with your largest premium seat clients have decision makers in the local markets that act the same as and suite holders. Build relationships with decision makers and under- a smaller client. In addition, each national client works from a business stand their corporate marketing plans. Share as many success stories development plan that involves the local markets. For example, I work from companies who have successfully built ROI programs from your with a Fortune 500 company that has business development activities products and services. in the Washington, Dallas, and New York markets. They are dependent on the local relationships in 20+ venues and act just like a single market Q: About 8,000 clients presently control the 12,000 suites in the four suite holder. major leagues. As someone in the corporate world, do you believe there are clients out there who could purchase suites on a per-event basis? Q: What do you believe teams should do for their truly national com- Do you believe the teams should change their marketing focus? panies that they don’t offer now? Is there a different way to treat a suite A: There is no doubt in my mind there are thousands and perhaps tens owner who has multiple suites in multiple venues, versus the local or of thousands of potential per-event customers. Birthdays, anniversaries, smaller regional company? holiday parties, employee recognition, poker night, executive interviews, A: I don’t believe there is a need to treat the national companies differ- etc. are just a few ideas I’ve heard recently. A month ago, I connected a ently, but as I mentioned earlier, I know there is a need for the teams good friend with a per-event suite at the LA Kings. How? I knew he was to partner closer with the large companies. Understand the company’s a hockey fanatic and was planning his 40th birthday party for 20 close marketing plans, future spend, utilization rates for the suite, etc. Rela- friends. Parents of young soccer players are another great target for the tionships drive corporate business plain and simple, so get ahead of the simple fact there are more kids playing soccer in the US than any other curve. sport. In addition, small to medium size businesses all over the US are S S E E AA T T 23 Fall0919_24.indd 23 12/15/09 10:41 PM

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