a four-year sponsorship agreement with Sports Traders, a local sporting goods business. The landmark deal includes naming rights to the RAP ballpark, exclusive and prominent signage in centre field, the Sports Traders logo painted on the field and the production of HarbourCats merchandise.
The deal appears to be a win for everyone involved -- the team, the local business, the city and even the fans. The HarbourCats should be commended for sourcing merchandise locally -- it helps keep profits in the community and it can only help the economy in this city. Unlike last year we might actually have have the option of buying a HarbourCats shirt that doesn't include a Nike swoosh. Most sports fans love that logo, but there are quite a few baseball fans in this town who aren't a supporter of the corporate giant, and appealing to the widest possible range of customers is always is good idea.
The deal is another feather in the cap for new GM Jim Swanson and Director of Marketing Brad Norris-Jones and another big step forward for the franchise. The naming rights component could not have been sealed without approval from the City of Victoria, and it proves once again that HarbourCats management works well with a wide range of stakeholders on southern Vancouver Island.
On a lighter note, the name Sports Traders Diamond at Royal Athletic Park is an unexpected gift to bloggers and anyone with the sense of humour of a 13-year-old boy. I’m guessing that the home of the HarbourCats will soon be referred to as the “STD at RAP” by many. Maybe that’s just me, but it seems to be a catchy acronym that just might spread (like, well... you get it). Hey, is it too late to call it Sports Traders Field?!?