Oct 2, 2012

Now that we’ve established that the NBA will more than likely have corporate sponsors’ logos on their jerseys in 2013, the question remains Who is going to sell the “ad space” on the players’ jerseys to said corporations?

For the Suns, the decision was apparently easy; they’re going to keep sponsorship sales in-house.

Suns owner Robert Sarver, he also owns the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury, and the rest of the Suns’ brass decided that keeping sales in house was the best course of action for the team. And apparently, interest in the prime real estate is already growing, although the Suns’ have declined to say how many different sponsors are vying for the position,

“Interest in the patch has really been building, which is not surprising given the unprecedented visibility it will give to the ultimate sponsor.” Rowley said.

The Suns current sponsors include US Airways Group, Century Link, Kia and Annexus — who signed a 2009 deal with the Suns to have their company name on the team’s practice jerseys.

During a test run of a sponsorship patch during June’s NBA finals, it was estimated that the patch was on display for 5 minutes, 41 seconds of camera time per game, per team. Some estimates have the patches generating $160 million dollars of brand exposure for corporate sponsors, while simultaneously creating a $100 million dollar windfall for the league and potentially $3 million to $5 million per team, although the splitting of revenue is still being discussed.

For the ownership team which was the first to add a corporate logo to a WNBA or NBA jersey, the Suns seem more than capable of handling the task of in-house sponsorship sales,

“We sold the first-ever branded jersey in WNBA or NBA history to LifeLock and we were one of the first NBA teams to sell the branding of our practice jerseys (to The Annexus Group), so if there’s a team that knows how to sell the NBA jersey patch it’s our internal team,” Rowley said. [Jason Rowley, Suns President].

The 2013 NBA season. It should be quite interesting.

(via Phoenix Business Journal)

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