USF athletics has announced a 10-year multimedia rights partnership with Tampa Bay Entertainment Properties, LLC (TBEP), an entity controlled by Jeff Vinik. The partnership will begin on July 1, 2017.
TBEP is separate and different from the Vinik controlled entity that operates Amalie Arena and owns the highly-successful Tampa Bay Lightning, which was lauded as the No. 1 franchise among the four major professional sports leagues by ESPN in 2016.
“We couldn’t be more excited to partner with this tremendous leadership team and organization led by Jeff Vinik,” USF director of athletics Mark Harlan said. “Jeff Vinik has set the standard for not only successful operation and growth of a sports property but for the development and nurturing of strong relationships in the community and corporate sphere. USF is proud to partner with such a widely-respected and admired organization and looks forward to doing great things together both in the Bay Area and beyond.”
“Tampa Bay Entertainment Properties is proud to be representing the University of South Florida as we deepen an already excellent relationship,” said Steve Griggs, chief executive officer for TBEP. “We have formed many great partnerships over the past few years under Jeff Vinik’s leadership in the local and regional community and we look forward to taking our partnership philosophies representing USF Athletics through exceptional brand strategy, world class activation and community focus.”
The 10-year partnership will run through 2027 and grants TBEP the exclusive rights to all commercial multimedia sports marketing, sponsorship, and respective inventory possessed by USF Athletics. Included among those is the exclusive right to secure naming rights for the USF Sun Dome and all USF owned inventory related to audio, television, print, social media and game entitlements. The partnership will also enhance fan engagement and customer service functions in USF Athletics and is expected to provide educational opportunities through integration with the university’s nationally-recognized Sport and Entertainment Management program. The agreement guarantees USF just over $29 million through the 10-year term, an average of $2.9 million per year.
“We are fortunate USF resides in a growing and thriving Bay Area with outstanding professional franchises,” Harlan said. “This is a very unique opportunity to partner with an organization that has been recognized nationwide as one the best in sports and to utilize their leadership, creativity, and relationships to continue to elevate USF Athletics.”