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Strategy

First Music Sponsorship Expands Hospitality Reach For UPS

Despite portfolios filled with big-time, big-dollar sports properties, sponsors can find resources to diversify efforts and reach new audiences.

United Parcel Service, Inc. continues to broaden its sponsorship portfolio.

The shipping and logistics giant, whose portfolio spans NASCAR, professional golf, the NCAA and the London Olympic Games, recently signed its first tie in the music space: a multiyear partnership with Live Nation Entertainment, Inc.

With customer and prospect entertaining as a primary objective of its sponsorship strategy, UPS aligned with Live Nation to provide hospitality options outside of sports.

“We have a diverse set of customers with equally diverse interests; not everyone is interested in sports,” said Doug Gibeaut, the company’s director of sponsorships and events.

The tie affords UPS hospitality at Live Nation-controlled venues and shows in the U.S., Europe, South America and Asia, a benefit that supports the company’s push to grow business outside North America as well as at home. As with other partnerships in the portfolio, UPS also will use the tie as part of its employee recognition program, Gibeaut added.

In addition to entertaining customers, prospects and employees, UPS will use the tie to gain business from Live Nation and touring musical acts.

The partnership affords exclusivity in the global package, shipping and logistics categories, and also includes status as Live Nation’s official sustainability partner—as both organizations will use the relationship to promote environmentally friendly business practices.

In connection with the shipping of tickets and concert-related merchandise purchased through www.LiveNation.com and other sales channels, Live Nation—through UPS—will buy certified carbon dioxide offsets to mitigate emissions produced by the transporting of those goods. “Every ticket will be shipped and tracked by UPS with carbon neutral offsets; that sends a great message to our fans,” said Russell Wallach, president of the Live Nation Network.

The tie represents Live Nation’s first partnership in the shipping category, he added.

To capture the interest of artists and their reps, UPS has created a new sustainability program for the live music industry that measures the carbon footprint of tours and offers solutions using the UPS network and mitigating remaining CO2 output through offsets.

That program also will help Live Nation build relations with artists, Wallach said. “We are always looking for ways to create more efficiency for tours, help them cut costs and be as environmentally friendly as possible.”

Although UPS has transported cargo for Michael Jackson, Van Halen and other tours, the company has not previously had an official partnership with a music property, said Mark Dickens, a company spokesperson.

UPS plans to use concert tickets and other sponsorship inventory to create traffic-driving promotional platforms for The UPS Store, its chain of independently owned printing and shipping locations, Gibeaut said.

Package benefits include in-venue signage, VIP ticketing, backstage experiences and advertising on Live Nation’s online platform.

Ron Rogowski, vice president of sponsorship & events, continues to oversee UPS’s sponsorship portfolio.

Sources
United Parcel Service, Inc., Tel: 404/828-6000
Live Nation Entertainment, Inc., Tel: 310/867-7000

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