Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) Chief Executive Officer Lloyd Blankfein and BlackRock Inc. (BLK) President Robert Kapito are among the 22 new members of the 2014 Super Bowl Host Committee, which plans to raise a record $50 million to hold the event in MetLife Stadium, home of the New York Jets and New York Giants.
Goldman Sachs and BlackRock joined 20 other corporations who have already committed at least $1 million each to sponsor the National Football League’s championship game, host committee CEO Alfred F. Kelly Jr. announced today in midtown Manhattan. The group is aiming to raise a Super Bowl-record $50 million, up from original estimates of $40 million, Kelly said.
“We’ve made great progress with these initial 22 sponsors and right now we’ve raised our goal to $50 million,” Kelly said in an interview. “I think it’s realistic -- the support from the region so far has been terrific.”
League owners voted last year to award the championship game of the most-watched U.S. television sport to MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. Last season’s Super Bowl between the Green Bay Packers and Pittsburgh Steelers was the most-watched event in U.S. television history.
Each of the 22 sponsors -- which include the New York Times Co. (NYT), Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ), JP Morgan Chase & Co. and Bank of America Corp. (BAC) -- contributed at least $1 million in cash, Kelly said. They also got a spot on the committee.
Jonathan Tisch, Giants treasurer and co-chairman of the committee along with Jets owner Woody Johnson, said the game will be “a show that the entire world will watch.”
“These 22 host committee sponsors represent the best of the region -- its finance, its media, its real estate, its consumer products,” Tisch told reporters. “These are names that are visibly recognizable.”
Economy a Concern
Kelly said that it helped the committee to be in a city with a large corporate base. He declined to comment how much had been raised already.
“The economy has been a concern, I’d be crazy to say it doesn’t continue to be a concern, but this region has a tremendous amount of pride and city spirit,” Kelly, 53, said. “The biggest and best corporations have seen this as a real potential economic boom for the region.”
The Super Bowl will bring in roughly $550 million to the region, Johnson said. Ralph LaRossa, new host committee member and CEO of PSE&G, New Jersey’s oldest and largest publicly owned utility, said that he got involved because of the financial impact of the event.
“As the state of New Jersey goes, PSE&G goes,” LaRossa, a Jersey City native who worked as a vendor at the old Giants Stadium in the late 1970s, said in an interview. “It’s really important to see something that’s going to bring jobs and economic development to the area.”
LaRossa said that the sponsorship didn’t include any contracts to provide utilities. He said that there was some advertising incorporated with the agreement.
Kelly said the committee is still looking for more sponsors, at a lower price than the 22 host sponsors and possibly including services. A date for the game will most likely come following the league owners meetings in Houston in October, he said.
This is the first open-air Super Bowl hosted in the Northeast. Kelly said a portion of the sponsorship money will be used to prepare for wintery weather, including field maintenance and clearing roads and parking lots. The logo for the committee incorporated a snowflake.
“We have to budget for that, and certainly that adds to the assumed expenses,” Kelly said. He said the threat of inclement weather added “millions of dollars” to the committee’s planned budget.
Former Jets running back Curtis Martin, who was named to the board, said that the weather will add intrigue to the game.
“That’s my favorite weather,” Martin, a five-time Pro Bowl selection, said in an interview. “One of the things that I have always liked about playing in the cold is that if you can be more focused through the cold and not allow it to affect you the way it’s affecting other people, you can gain an advantage.”
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