Sports Business

Hot mod madness: Customizer Kenny Brown enjoys performance-car revivalRestricted Content

October 24, 2005
Chris O\'malley
In a dark corner of the Kenny Brown Performance garage is the 2005 Mustang Ford Motor Co. should have built. Supercharger. Disc brakes as big as the tires of some cars. All hung on a chassis that's Prince Charles stiff. And shrouding its meaty tires are a protruding rear fender and a filled-in quarter window raked all the way back to the taillights, akin to the 1967 Mustang fastback. "It's kind of like the marriage of heritage and technology," said...
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Lee, Willis prosper outside limelight: Former WRTV co-anchors run growing public relations firmRestricted Content

October 17, 2005
Anthony Schoettle
News defined the careers of Clyde Lee and Diane Willis for a combined five decades. And it was the nation's biggest news event of the last decade-9/11-that served as an ominous backdrop for the duo's first entrepreneurial venture. "We incorporated in August 2001, and less than a month later, 9/11 hit, and we thought, 'Oh my,'" Lee recalled. But more than four years later, Lee/Willis Communications is still standing-and prospering. The fiscal swoon that followed 9/11 caused many companies to...
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SPORTS: We've arrived as a big-time football town-for nowRestricted Content

October 17, 2005
Bill Benner
Are you ready for some football? Of course you are. That the Indianapolis Colts are making the first of not one, not two, but three appearances on ABC's "Monday Night Football" is once again recognition of the obvious, which is that Jim Irsay's ownership, Bill Polian's leadership and Tony Dungy's coaching have made the Horseshoes as hot a commodity nationally as they are locally. Not that Peyton Manning, Edgerrin James, Marvin Harrison, Dwight Freeney, Gary Brackett, Cato June et al...
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COLD PROSPECT?: New stadium may not overcome climate, lack of corporate clout as city vies for Super BowlRestricted Content

October 17, 2005
Anthony Schoettle
Did NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue do a snow job on Indiana legislators? Tagliabue dangled visions of Indianapolis' hosting a Super Bowl when he made the case for a $625 million stadium before Indiana lawmakers earlier this year. Now construction is under way, and local officials are watching 2006 host city Detroit to see if it can warm skeptics to the idea of playing the Super Bowl in a cold-weather city. But some observers of the big game doubt Indianapolis has...
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BEHIND THE NEWS: Exec tries to rewrite baseball legacy, but boo-birds aboundRestricted Content

October 10, 2005
Greg Andrews
Emmis Communications Corp. CEO Jeff Smulyan ended up black and blue the last time he owned a baseball team. This time around, he's taking blows even before he finds out whether he gets the team. Smulyan wants both Emmis shareholders and residents of the Washington, D.C., region to be excited about his group's bid to buy the Washington Nationals from Major League Baseball for at least $450 million. But already leading an anti-Smulyan charge is Washington Post columnist Thomas Boswell,...
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Pathway to growth: Production firm's storytelling attracts national attentionRestricted Content

October 10, 2005
Anthony Schoettle
Despite a wall lined with Emmy Awards and a client list including ESPN and VH1, Pathway Productions founder Michael Husain is as eager to talk about corporate work and Web site development as his firm's latest Peyton Manning documentary or his work showcased in this year's Heartland Film Festival. "The new media side of our business, and that includes Web site development, grew 100 percent in each of the last two years," Husain said. "So you can see why we're...
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Coastal is in the name, central Indiana is its game: California-based firm cultivating its local operationsRestricted Content

October 10, 2005
Tammy Lieber
Despite its name, Coastal Partners LLC is firmly entrenched in the heartland. Most of its current projects are in central Indiana, as are about half its employees. In August, the Sacramento-based firm hired Tom Ott to oversee its central Indiana operations and new development. Ott, a respected 10-year veteran of the local office of Los Angeles-based CB Richard Ellis, plans to continue his relationships in the local brokerage community to further Coastal Partners' presence in the area. Although the name...
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SPORTS: Hoop paths of Indiana and Lithuania finally crossRestricted Content

October 10, 2005
Bill Benner
In the small republic by the Baltic Sea-population 3.4 million-many youngsters grow up dreaming the same kinds of hoop dreams young Hoosiers do. "Basketball in Lithuania is even crazier," Jasikevicius, a 6-foot-4-inch guard, said recently at Conseco Fieldhouse, moments after finishing his first official practice as a Pacer. "We always call it our second religion." During the 50 years Lithuania was part of the Soviet Union, players from the republic were the nucleus of the USSR national teams. It was...
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Pacers' new game plan: polish team persona: NBA squads must comply with tough conduct rulesRestricted Content

October 10, 2005
Anthony Schoettle
Almost a year removed from the infamous brawl in Detroit, the Indiana Pacers are ready to put their best foot forward. And they're getting a hand-or more like a foot in the backside-from NBA Commissioner David Stern. Stern on Sept. 28 handed down new league dress code and conduct rules aimed at brightening the image of players and making them more accessible to fans, community groups and media outlets. The rules-which require players to wear sport coats, collared shirts and...
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SPORTS: Why big-league baseball has become bush leagueRestricted Content

October 3, 2005
Bill Benner
The Great American Pastime is past my time. I've pretty much ceased to care about Major League Baseball. Note that I said "major league." I remain very much a fan of the Indianapolis Indians and the experience to be had in the country's very best minor-league ballpark, Victory Field. I do know, albeit casually, that going into the last week of the regular season, there was considerable sorting out to be done before playoff participants could be determined, that the...
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Speaking of health care: Local experts weigh in on rising costs, the uninsured and whether our current system needs an overhaul Public health priorities, executive salaries and the "gold rush" of health care construction were among the topics tackled SeptRestricted Content

October 3, 2005
Public health priorities, executive salaries and the "gold rush" of health care construction were among the topics tackled Sept. 21 in the latest installment of Indianapolis Business Journal's Power Breakfast Series. IBJ reporter Tom Murphy moderated the panel discussion, attended by some of the area's foremost health care experts. Following is an edited transcript of the often-spirited discussion, which included a brief interruption by protestors seeking medical insurance coverage for janitorial staff who clean Anthem Inc. buildings. IBJ: Can you...
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Texas group roaring for Indians stock: Lion Fund dangles 40-percent premium for ballclub's sharesRestricted Content

October 3, 2005
Anthony Schoettle
A San Antonio-based hedge fund's public solicitation of Indianapolis Indians stock is akin to a hostile takeover attempt, industry observers said. It also brings into question the succession plan of the Indians' 72-year-old chairman, Max Schumacher, who owns 39 percent of the company's stock. While officials for The Lion Fund LP said they aren't looking to take majority control of the city's AAA baseball franchise, they're willing to pay a substantial premium over the Indians' last buyback offer of $9,200...
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Hip-deep in endorsements: Sony, Kraft deals help Manning reign as NFL advertising kingRestricted Content

October 3, 2005
Anthony Schoettle
With three newly inked endorsement deals, Indianapolis Colts quarterback Peyton Manning is scoring faster and more often with corporate America than any other National Football League player, according to his handlers at Cleveland-based IMG Worldwide. But Manning's endorsement success hasn't played out as fast as one of his famous twominute drills. Since entering the league sevenplus years ago, Manning and IMG have followed a carefully diagrammed blueprint to build first a local platform through deals with St. Vincent Health and...
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SPORTS: New stadium part of strategy born here decades agoRestricted Content

September 26, 2005
Bill Benner
The circumstance finally gave way to pomp last week. And as the silver shovels glistened in a setting sun at the Indiana Stadium ground breaking, a new day dawned for Indianapolis and central Indiana. Similarly, the multipurpose stadium-sorry, but I refuse to call it the "Colts Stadium" when its benefits will be so vast and its uses so varied-represents both an end and a beginning. In some ways, it is the final piece of a puzzle that began to be...
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IRL teams may have to cut staff or broaden horizons: Mechanics could feel biggest impact of shorter seasonRestricted Content

September 26, 2005
Anthony Schoettle
The 2006 Indy Racing League schedule-which is two months shorter and has three fewer races than 2005-has teams considering either cutting staff or expanding into other race series to fill the void. "You hate to make any staff cuts, but that's one question facing all the [IRL] teams," said Doug Boles, chief operating officer for locally based Panther Racing. "This is a very competitive industry and to keep your good people, you want to keep them employed year-round." But with...
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Indians stock price belted into upper deck: AAA baseball franchise hits $21,000 per shareRestricted Content

September 26, 2005
Anthony Schoettle
Despite the meteoric rise of the Indianapolis Indians' stock price, some industry analysts think the minor-league baseball franchise is still undervalued. In August, three shares of the thinly traded public company sold for $21,000 each and another share sold for $19,500. The $21,000 share price-with 800 shares outstanding-puts a $16.8 million value on the AAA team. That's leagues ahead of the $8.3 million it was valued at during a stock buyback initiated by the franchise in 2002. "A value for...
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Selective Seconds: Consignment stores' owner proud to be picky High-end items are the stock of choice at Selective SecondsRestricted Content

September 19, 2005
Jo Ellen
Vena Holden is picky about the seconds in her shops, specializing in better brand-name clothing, accessories, linens, gifts and shoes. She makes clear that hers is not a used clothing store. "We look for the higher-end items and are selective in what we take," said Holden, 45, who founded the appropriately named Selective Seconds after years of shopping consignment shops for herself when she worked as a legal secretary and office manager for local law firm Plews Shadley Racher and...
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SPORTS: IU getting it right where tailgating is concernedRestricted Content

September 19, 2005
Bill Benner
My alma mater, Indiana University, has taken its share of licks in recent times. In fact, I've used this space to throw some of the punches. But its recent decision-coinciding with the start of football season-to try to oust the party animals from the jungle just south of Memorial Stadium on game days was prudent, correct and too long in coming. This, folks, has been a human and legal calamity waiting to happen. The "jungle" is a park-like area across...
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VIEWPOINT: We all pay the price of homelessnessRestricted Content

September 19, 2005
Brian S.
"The moral test of government is how that government treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; and those who are in the shadows of life, the sick, the needy, and the handicapped." -Hubert H. Humphrey The most recent sessions of the Indiana General Assembly and the U.S. Congress have focused significant efforts on addressing the needs of children through education and the elderly through prescription drug...
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Private high school set: Cristo Rey to open downtown with 46 companies behind itRestricted Content

September 19, 2005
Anthony Schoettle
A private high school that relies on business participation, the first of its kind in Indiana, is set to open downtown in the fall of 2006. A work-study program designed to help lowincome students pay for tuition and give them corporate work experience is what will set Providence Cristo Rey High School apart from its private and public counterparts throughout the state. Corporate sponsors said it will also give promising students a local business connection, which could help keep them...
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TOM HARTON Commentary: Where business, disaster meetRestricted Content

September 12, 2005
We don't do weather. Business newspapers don't ask reporters to stand in bitter cold to demonstrate that it's uncomfortable. We don't warn our readers about the dangers of a storm by assigning a reporter to stand in the middle of one. When the wind and rain send things crashing down around us, we become consumers of news just like everyone else. Last week, we broke our rule. No, we didn't brave the elements, but what happened in New Orleans and...
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GERALD BEPKO Commentary: FFA is important to our futureRestricted Content

September 12, 2005
What major, national, student-oriented not-for-profit organization with deep roots in Kansas City moved its headquarters to Indianapolis in the last decade and now has made commitments to bring a huge number of visitors to Indianapolis each year into the future? If you think the answer is the NCAA, you would be half right. The complete answer is that there are two such organizations: the NCAA and FFA. Both the NCAA and FFA brought economic benefits along with their headquarters. Through...
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Final 4 lodging scarce: 7 months before event, brokers lock up roomsRestricted Content

September 12, 2005
Anthony Schoettle
Basketball fans hoping to catch the action at next spring's NCAA men's Final Four in Indianapolis are more likely to score decent tickets than they are a downtown hotel room, though neither will come cheap. As the event has moved from fan-centric to corporate, the demand and price for hotel rooms has reached new highs. And the hotel room supply for Final Fours held locally is likely to tighten as NCAA officials push for larger Final Four venues-such as the...
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SPORTS: City should be tour stop for men's or women's golfRestricted Content

September 12, 2005
Bill Benner
That sellout crowds flocked to Carmel's Crooked Stick Golf Club for the Solheim Cup should come as no surprise. This is an area with a big appetite for golf, whether playing or watching it. Yet it's also a reminder that for all we have accomplished in spectator sports, professional golf remains the hole in our doughnut. Yes, we have had our on-and-off forays into the arena. A PGA Tour stop, the 500 Festival Open, took place on the old Speedway...
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SPORTS: Championship contenders bring out Mr. SofteeRestricted Content

September 5, 2005
Bill Benner
My friend, the young radio sports talk show host, tells me I've become Mister Softee. He says I have lost my edge. He wonders why I don't rattle cages like I used to. He says the Indianapolis Colts have to win the Super Bowl this year, and anything less should be considered an abject failure. And I say, poppycock. He says winning a championship is the only measurement of success in professional sports. And I say, baloney. He says if...
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