Jones Soda Out, Coke In at Barclays Center
Despite cutting a seven year deal with Jones Soda in 2007, Barclays Center has named Coca-Cola has the official carbonated soft drink provider of the Barclays Center of Brooklyn.
The New York Post writes that fans pushed for the switch to Coke products after arena officials announced the original deal with Jones Soda, but the soda maker's recent financial difficulties and management shake-up may have also played a key role in today's announcement. According to the Post, the arena has settled its contract with Jones.
“Whether during the glory years at Ebbets Field or on Coney Island, Coca-Cola has a long and rich history in Brooklyn sports,” said Brett Yormark, CEO of the Barclays Center. “We are committed to bringing the very best to the Barclays Center, so we’re excited to welcome this dynamic brand back to a major venue in the borough.”
Coca-Cola will be the exclusive provider of an extensive list of beverages served at the Barclays Center, including: carbonated soft drinks, juices, teas, and other select beverages.
“Brooklyn's official motto is 'Unity Makes Strength.' While Coca-Cola has never left Brooklyn, we’re now joining forces with a major venue, reuniting with the borough and forming a strong partnership with NETS Basketball and the Barclays Center," said Sharon Byers, Vice President, Marketing Assets, Coca-Cola North America.
In addition to receiving traditional sponsorship assets, Jones Soda had planned to open a branded Jones Soda Shoppe inside Barclays Center, but the Seattle-based soda brand has incurred financial difficulties since 2007 in the process slashing expenses and laying off employees. In 2010, the Seattle Seahawks ended a three year sponsorship with Jones Soda and signed a deal with Coca-Cola the next day. When that deal was signed, then CEO Peter van Stolk said a key to the deal was a patent the company owned that would allow it to place individual photos on the labels of its bottles. Similarly, Jones planned to offer customized soda flavors in Nets-themed packaging as part of the original Barclays Center deal.
Coca-Cola joins ADT, EmblemHealth, MetroPCS, Cushman & Wakefield, Stoli, Foxwoods, Haier, Izod, Budweiser, Highpoint Solutions, Optimum Lightpath and Willis as partners of the Barclays Center, which is scheduled to open in September 2012.