Partnership Unveils Cohesive Multimedia Rights, Ticketing, Licensing, Data & Analytics Strategy
SAINT PAUL, Minn. (May 4, 2021) – The University of St. Thomas Department of Intercollegiate Athletics is proud to announce a relationship for comprehensive multimedia rights, sponsorship, licensing, ticketing, and data and analytics representation with Learfield IMG College, a national leader for media and technology services in intercollegiate athletics.
This comes as the Tommies embark on history as the only program to reclassify directly from Division III to Division I. The Tommies will compete as members of the Summit League, Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) women’s league, the Central Collegiate Hockey Association (CCHA), and the Pioneer Football League this coming fall.
As part of a new model, Learfield IMG College will establish a local team, Tommie Sports Properties, that will encompass a combined staff focused on ticket sales and service, as well as comprehensive multimedia rights, all entirely dedicated to representing St. Thomas. This team will be fully integrated alongside Vice President, Director of Athletics Phil Esten’s administration and manage a corporate partner platform to elevate opportunities for local, regional and national businesses of all sizes wanting to align with the Tommies.
“I’m thrilled about the comprehensive and cohesive structure we have in place with Learfield IMG College, bringing in the company’s ticketing, sales, licensing and multimedia rights offerings all at once – particularly when our university would benefit from legacy guidance at the DI level,” said Esten. “I’ve been fortunate to work with many people within the Learfield IMG College companies throughout my career at Penn State, Cal, and Minnesota. They are leaders for a reason, earning respect and trust across the entire industry. The company knows the intricacies of this entire business like no one else, and I’m excited for our future together.”
In addition to the comprehensive multimedia rights relationship, Learfield IMG College’s family of companies will represent St. Thomas through CLC, the nation’s leading collegiate trademark licensing company; Paciolan, a ticketing leader to help the Tommies deliver an exceptional fan experience via digital tickets, fundraising, marketing and various technologies; and Learfield IMG College Ticket Solutions, a national leader in college outbound ticket sales that will bring its suite of services to St. Paul. SIDEARM Sports, also operating with the Learfield IMG College family, already aligns with the Tommies as digital provider of its official athletics website and the official Tommie Sports Mobile App.
A sophisticated added value for St. Thomas will be recognized through Fanbase – a proprietary data and analytics platform available exclusively to Learfield IMG College multimedia rights partner schools. Providing an innovative and holistic view of the fan, Fanbase helps educate schools and sponsors on how best to engage fans, and ultimately drive revenue. It is the largest data and analytics platform in college athletics, with more than 90 Division I schools utilizing it.
“We’re excited to bring the Tommies into our portfolio of great college brands we have the privilege to represent, particularly on the cusp of a major milestone move for the university,” said Mike Hamilton, EVP, Learfield IMG College’s University Partnership Group. “Our company has the distinct opportunity to bring trusted, vetted solutions to our university partners while we understand the varying needs of schools at any given time. Coming off an incredibly challenging year, we know that digital and delivering compelling content is vital. We also recognize the excitement centered on the possibility of larger fan attendance next season, so we’re intently focused on all scenarios where we can innovate; continually and creatively engage with fans, whether they’re inside or outside of venues.”
Learfield IMG College is the leading media and technology services company in intercollegiate athletics. The company unlocks the value of college sports for brands and fans through an omnichannel platform with innovative content and commerce solutions for fan engagement. The Learfield IMG College suite of services includes licensing and multimedia sponsorship management; publishing, audio, digital and social media; data analytics; ticketing, ticket sales and professional concessions expertise; branding; campus-wide business and sponsorship development; and venue technology systems. Headquartered in Plano, Texas, the company has long had the privilege of being an advocate for intercollegiate athletics and the student-athlete experience. Since 2008, it has served as title sponsor for the acclaimed Learfield IMG College Directors’ Cup, supporting athletic departments across all divisions.
The University of St. Thomas is a comprehensive Catholic university located in St. Paul, Minnesota. Home to more than 10,000 undergraduate and graduate students, St. Thomas has established itself as the largest private institution in the state of Minnesota. With a combined 84 individual and team national titles, Tommie Athletics is currently one of the premier Division III athletics departments in the country and is believed to be the first in the modern era of the NCAA to reclassify directly from Division III to Division I.