7-Eleven Backs 18 Pro Teams

DALLAS Convenience store operator 7-Eleven has signed multi-year sponsorship agreements with 18 professional sports teams and arenas.

Deals with the National Football League, Major League Baseball, National Basketball Association and the Indy Racing League include radio and television advertising, venue signage, coupon distribution at events and a 7-Eleven presence on the team Web sites.

While 7-Eleven did not disclose terms of the deal, Jim Andrews of the Chicago-based sponsorship firm IEG called it one of the most “comprehensive” sponsorship arrangements the client has ever signed.

While maintaining its sponsorship of driver Tony Kanaan of Andretti Green Racing, 7-Eleven added events at the Texas Motor Speedway near Dallas and in St. Petersburg, Fla.

Promotions will be localized and include halftime or game-night contests, special “7-Eleven Day” games, street team sponsorships, store appearances by players, cheerleaders or mascot and other events.

“Our research shows that one of the top ways our core customers spend their leisure time is attending or watching sports events,” said Doug Foster, vice president of marketing for Dallas-based 7-Eleven.

NFL teams in the deal include the Chicago Bears, Dallas Cowboys, Denver Broncos, Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins, New England Patriots, Seattle Seahawks and Oakland Raiders.

NBA partnerships include the Dallas Mavericks, Chicago Bulls, Miami Heat and Los Angeles Lakers.

Major League Baseball promotions include a sweepstakes program for the New York Yankees, fireworks night for the Chicago White Sox and a contest for the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field.

The company will also remain media sponsor when the X Games competition airs on ABC-TV in 2007 through 2009, Foster said.