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Indianapolis Motor Speedway officials said an effort that started in 2011 has resulted this May in $3 million in new Indianapolis 500 sponsorship deals.
Total sponsorship revenue this year, IMS officials said, is up 9 percent over last year and more than 18 percent over 2011. Much of the success, they said, is due to the development of new sponsorship categories and filling vacant ones.
While financial terms of the specific deals were not disclosed, Speedway officials said sponsors will get a mix of track signage (premium sponsors will get signage visible during television broadcasts), tickets, hospitality offerings and the right to use Speedway and Indy 500 logos in their marketing.
In all, IMS officials said they’ve added 23 new sponsors and increased the packages of seven existing sponsors at the 2013 Indy 500. Most, however, are relatively small deals in the low-six-figure range, sports marketers said.
One of the biggest-name sponsors to join the Indy 500 paddock this year is Philadelphia-based Sunoco. While Sunoco has been an IndyCar series sponsor since 2011, Shell previously had an exclusive sponsorship deal at the IMS. Sunoco is expected to be active in promoting the race this year.
Also notable is Hardee’s, which is the first fast-food category sponsor at the track since 2008. Other big-name sponsors to join the race this year are Great Clips, Caterpillar and the National Guard.
Other new sponsors include: Abbott Laboratories (health care), Allied Solutions (insurance), Brand Affinity Technologies/Fantapper (photography), Bear Data Solutions (technology), Blue Renewable Energy/SunWize (solar), Bluegreen Resorts (vacation/resorts), BMG (staging/event production), Citizens Energy Group (water/energy), Gladiator GarageWorks (home improvement products), Global Tower Partners (telecommunications hardware), Growth Energy (ethanol fuel), K&N Filters (automotive supplies), Keihin (automotive specialty), Old National Bank (financial services), Plantronics (technology), Ray’s Trash Service (waste management and recycling), SMS Audio (electronics) and The Jackson Group (printing).
IndyCar teams are also gaining speed this May, with several new sponsors.
Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing this month signed a deal with Century 21. The residential real estate firm will be the primary sponsor of the car driven by up-and-comer Josef Newgarden and will promote its Smarter, Bolder, Faster campaign at the track this month.
On Monday, Indianapolis-based Angie’s List confirmed it would partner with Katherine Legge’s effort in the No. 81 Schmidt Peterson Pelfrey Motorsports Honda. Legge, a popular British driver, made the race after her deal came together on Pole Day Saturday.
Another Broken Egg Café, the popular breakfast, lunch and brunch spot in the Southeast that recently opened in Indianapolis at 9435 N. Meridian St., signed a deal to sponsor Ed Carpenter, who is sitting on the pole. The company’s vibrant rooster and broken egg logo has been installed on Carpenter’s No. 20 racecar.
KV Racing recently signed a deal to promote the launch of the energy drink N.O.-Explode. A bright red N.O.-Explode logo will adorn the highly visible shark fin on Tony Kanaan’s No. 11 car for the Indy 500 and five other IndyCar races in Detroit, Texas, Iowa, Pocono and Mid-Ohio.