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Rogers Hip Checks Telus for Stanley Cup Glory

Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 7, 2011 02:00 PM

There used to be an arena in Vancouver called General Motors Place, but a certain little recession and difficulty in the auto-selling marketplace caused that deal to be cut short and naming-rights to be available again. So last July, Rogers Communications, the Canadian telecom giant that also owns the Toronto Blue Jays and has its names on various properties in Toronto, pulled off a double whammy in Vancouver.

Not only did Rogers suddenly gain a major springboard for young telecom users to be exposed to their growing brand in western Canada, the company also knocked out competitor Telus from having the naming rights (which it was also competing to obtain) and to continue as the official telecom company of the arena.

Telus had been the stronger telecom brand in the West, so this move will help Rogers push some of that market share back into its own brand.

"It was a very important strategic alliance for us," Peter King, senior director of sponsorship for Rogers said, according to the Vancouver Sun. "(British Columbia) is a critical market for us and the investment with the Canucks further enhances our investment in the province, in the city, and builds on our sports legacy."

Rogers is even happier now that the Vancouver Canucks, the main residents of Rogers Arena, are in the Stanley Cup Finals (the Canucks are up two games to one so far against the Boston Bruins). Every day they keep playing, Rogers not only makes more cash, it also gets to spread its brand name far and wide.

"We feel the No. 1 sports brand in B.C. is the Canucks," King said of British Columbia's homegrown hockey heroes. "Did we think last July when we announced our sponsorship of the Canucks that they'd be in the position where they are now? To be honest, yes." And that connection for fans could help turn some people into lifelong Rogers users.

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