In the last year of the NHL broadcasting partnership with NBC, the game had modest total audience delivery of 391,000, down from 590,000 in the best 2012/2013 season. ESPN and Turner Sports will take over, boost the TV rankings, and attract even more sponsors to already lucrative bunch.
In the last season, NHL allowed helmet sponsorships to create additional revenue, which welcomed a new slew of sponsors.
Tiers of sponsorships
NHL has global partners, the ones that dominate in arenas, promotional materials and TV screens. Adidas, Apple, AWS, EA, Fastenal, SAP and Upper Deck make the top tier of partners for the professional hockey league.
Traditional sports endorsement partners like telecoms, car manufacturers and financial institutions lead the North American tier of NHL sponsorships. But, recently saw National Hockey League teaming up with Sportbook and iGaming sponsors even in these high-levels. Opening up to new lucrative sponsorship deals with gaming providers is becoming the norm throughout North American sports. Popularity in the USA and Canada leads igaming companies to believe users will search for the best odds on the game and stay in complimentary websites playing games in Canadian casino online websites.
Hard liquor, iGaming and insurance
Below the North American, you can find the USA and Canadian partners, two separate groups. Again, you can find insurance companies like Geico, Navy Federal Credit Union, Verizon as a telecom company, and some unusual endorsement deals. Jagermeister and New Amsterdam Vodka are among the companies supporting the NHL. If you’re not a fan of alcohol, you might be for sweets, and Dunkin’ is among the sponsors. On the USA tier of partners, NHL has dealt with four igaming companies.
More traditional sponsors in Canada
Scotiabank is a long-term sponsor of the NHL, and Canadian teams Calgary Flames and Toronto Maple Leafs play in the bank-sponsored arena. Most Canadian NHL partners are from the food industry, including KitKat, Danone, Kellogs, Heinz, etc. However, you can find Nutrl Vodka among the more traditional sponsors of the NHL in Canada.
As with other North American sports, hockey sponsorship deals depend on the rating, the market value and other factors. Small-market teams can’t expect huge contracts, but the clubs from the most critical markets create huge revenues. For example, adding helmet sponsorships gave New York Rangers, Washington Capitals and other big market teams additional promoting channels. As a result, they can get over a million-dollar for a small helmet banner.
The profile of team sponsors is more or less the same as the league supporters. AT&T stands behind Dallas Stars, and Bell is Canadian telecom supporting Winnipeg and Montreal. Arenas carry the names of big financial sponsors like Capital One Arena in Washington or Scotiabank Arena in Toronto.
Health service providers are another niche that has emerged as sponsors for many teams. For example, Arizona Coyotes have Dignity Health, and Roswell Park Cancer Center supports Buffalo’s team. The list of sponsors and partners of 32 teams, the League, and even Divisions is substantial. In addition, the sport opened up to iGaming, liquor manufacturers, with a slew of financial institutions, food and the car industry as the primary sources of financing.